Lionel Messi is at the peak of his game but the Barcelona superstar knows the time will come when he may have to consider a positional change to prolong his career.
The Argentinian striker has been sensational in the 2014-15 campaign, scoring a total of 55 goals in all competitions to fire Barca to the Primera Division title, Messi’s seventh, and also to a Copa de Rey Final triumph.
Barca and Messi can win a treble for the second time in six years if they defeat Juventus in tonight’s Champions League final in Berlin.
“I don’t look at records, that’s not why I’m playing the game,” Messi said.
“Goals, of course – every player in my position wants to score goals But most of all it is to win trophies.
“My target is always to win trophies for Barcelona, and that will always be my motivation, to win things.”
Messi has won 13 major trophies with Barca, including three Champions League crowns and three FIFA Ballon d’Or awards.
The South American, who made his Barca debut at the age of 16, is now 27 and scoring for fun.
“I am happy to play as a forward, as a deep forward, in the middle – I just hope that I can keep going,” he said.
“There are many players who have prolonged their careers by playing in a different place, where maybe you don’t rely on being so explosive all the time, on your speed.
“A lot of players drop deeper when they move into the later stages of their career, and that’s certainly an option for me, to become an out-and-out midfielder. I have played in midfield a lot already, and I cover a lot of ground there.”
Barcelona look set to have Andres Iniesta available this evening, with the midfielder having returned to training after a calf injury.
Iniesta, 31, missed training earlier this week after being injured during last weekend’s Copa del Rey final triumph over Athletic Bilbao.
That means Iniesta could yet line up alongside his long-time midfield colleague Xaxi for the final time against Juventus, which will be the last match in Barca colours for latter.
Club captain Xavi is leaving the Catalans after 24 years this summer to join Qatari side Al Sadd, and the 35-year-old playmaker is hoping to go out a winner.
“We go into the final full of confidence and charged up,” Xavi said.
Should Barcelona emerge victorious from the Olympiastadion, Xavi will leave with 25 trophies in his career with the club.
“We already have a historic double this season and we want more,” Xavi said.
“We could equal the historic treble.”
Defeating Italian champions Juventus will be no easy task, though.
Juve have already eliminated Barcelona’s arch-rivals and reigning European champions Real Madrid in the semi-finals, and are also on for a trophy treble this season.
“Juventus are a great team, with talent and physique,” Xavi said. “Saturday’s final will be my last for Barca and I hope to lift the trophy in Berlin.”