Lionel Messi fends off money-laundering claims

Lionel Messi, in his first reaction since a Spanish newspaper alleged that his father launders drug money through charity matches, has said that he is hurt by accusations against him, his family and fellow players.

updated: December 20, 2013 16:44 IST
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Barcelona: Barcelona star Lionel Messi defended himself, his family and fellow players on Friday against press reports linking charity football matches he played in to alleged laundering of Colombian drug money.

In his first personal reaction to the allegations that emerged on Monday, the striker insisted the benefit matches were "100 percent charitable".

"I deeply regret what is being said not only about me but about people I love such as my dad and players who are my friends," the Argentine international told Spanish radio station Rac1. (Also read: Messi's agents deny money-laundering report)

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