Lionel Messi Barcelona star denies getting $3.7 for Gabon trip

Lionel Messi has denied reports that he was paid $3.7 for his trip to Gabon and has asked for correction on the story

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  play Lionel Messi has denied reports that he was paid to visit Gabon (AFP/Getty Images)
  play Messi wa sin Gabon to lay foundations for a stadium to be used for the 2017 African Cup of Nations (Reuters)
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Barcelona star Lionel Messi has denied the report that he was paid  $3.7 for his visit to African country Gabon.

The four time Ballon d'Or winner was in Gabon as guest of President Ali Bongo to lay foundations for a new stadium in the city of Port-Gentil which will host the 2017 African Cup of Nations.

Following the visit, France Football reported that Messi was paid $3.7 for the trip and for also supporting Bongo who has been regularly linked with corruption and human rights abuses.

Messi however has denied being paid for the trip, revealing that he made his trip because of his relationship with former Barcelona teammate Samuel Eto who is from Cameroon.

  play Lionel Messi says he made the trip to Gabon because of his friendship with Samuel Eto (EPA)


The Cameroonian legend according to Spanish newspaper Mundo Deportivo, is also a close friend to the Gabonese president, Ali Bongo.

The newspaper also reports that Messi is outraged with the report and have asked France Football  to publish a correction of the earlier publication.

The Gabonese government also denied the claims that they paid Messi for the trip.

The Republic of Gabon strongly denies having transferred or having promised to transfer any sum of money to the Argentine international football player Lionel Messi, who was in Gabon from 17 to 18 July 2015 on the invitation of Ali Bongo,” the statement from the government read.

Watch the video of Lionel Messi's visit to Gabon below:

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