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Lionel Messi was not in Turkey at time of military coup, says FC Barcelona

Lionel Messi

Lionel Messi was scheduled to play in chartiy soccer match in Turkey on Saturday, but his club FC Barcelona says star was still in Spain on Friday night during attempted military coup.

Have no fear Lionel Messi fans, the soccer star was not in Turkey during Friday night’s attempted military coup.

FC Barcelona put out a statement saying that although the five-time Ballon d’Or winner is scheduled to play in a charity match in Turkey on Saturday, he — and Barcelona star midfielder Andres Iniesta — were in Spain at the time of the military incident.

Barcelona did say that Messi’s teammate Arda Turan and former players Carles Puyol, Deco and Eric Abidal were in Turkey Friday night, but were “far from areas of danger and in constant contact with the club.

The players — as well as embattled Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan — were scheduled to appear at the charity event in Antalaya, a resort area on the Mediterranean coast — for former Barcelona star Samuel Eto’o’s foundation that helps infants, especially in Western Africa. Eto’o is from Cameroon.

Other players and former players who were expected to attend included Diego Maradona, Neymar, Luis Suarez, Eden Hazard, Didier Drogba and Xavi.

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