New Barcelona manager Quique Setien opens up on relationship with Lionel Messi

Barcelona boss Quique Setien has opened up on how his relationship with Lionel Messi has been since taking over at the Nou Camp.

Setien replaced Ernesto Valverde at the helm last month but has had an indifferent start to life at the La Liga giants.

A win over Grenada has been followed by two Copa del Rey victories, though the first of those saw Barca survive a scare from Ibiza.

Sandwiched in between the two cup ties was a loss at Valencia though Barcelona remain well in the hunt for the La Liga title.

Messi netted in Setien’s first game, against Grenada, before finding the net twice against Leganes in the Copa del Rey on Thursday.

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And ahead of the return of La Liga action against Levante on Sunday, Setien has spoken about his relationship with the six-time Ballon d’Or winner.

When asked by Spanish outlet Sport about Messi, Setien said: “I hope we can make him so happy that he's desperate to stay.

“But he will be here in the future anyway, I have no doubts about that.

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"Contact has been normal, like with any player. He's convinced about what we can win.

"You can tell he's a winner and that he wants things done well. He's interested in the team talks.

“He knows he's an important player, that he can solve many games, but we have to focus on the team to be stronger."

And having seen Barcelona struggle on the road under him, Setien is determined to improve the away form.

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He said at a press conference: “Certainly our away form is something we need to work on. We need to change our flow away from home.

"We need to work out what it is we are doing right at home and wrong away, and we've got two games we can work on that.

"They'll be two very intense games, and a win tomorrow would be a huge boost for morale going into those two fixtures."

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