Messi, father 'calm' about trial
Lionel Messi's lawyer said the Argentina star and his father were both feeling calm and ready to counter the charges against them as their tax fraud trial opened yesterday in a Barcelona court.
Messi has had to leave Argentina's preparations for the Copa America in the United States to defend himself from accusations that he failed to properly pay taxes for part of his earnings received from the Spanish club.
Messi and his father, Jorge Horacio Messi, have been charged with three counts of tax fraud and could be sentenced to nearly two years in prison if found guilty of defrauding Spain's tax office of US$4.5 million from 2007-09.
They have denied any wrongdoing, and even if found guilty, are unlikely to face any jail time.
Absent yesterday, the Argentina playmaker is not obliged to show up until tomorrow.
"Everything is good. All good," said Lionel Messi's lawyer, Enrique Bacigalupo, after arriving at the Barcelona court yesterday.