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Messi leaving Barca like your father dying - Pique

Gerard Pique believes the impact of team-mate Lionel Messi one day leaving Barcelona will be "like the day your father dies".

Messi came through the LaLiga giants' famed La Masia and has developed into one of the greatest players of all-time.

Pique, who was alongside the Argentine maestro at the academy before leaving and later returning to Barca, knows the impact Messi's departure will one day have.

"He has been completely unique… the day he leaves will be like the day your father dies, and that will be hard," he told TV3.

"We talk about Leo now, but one day he won't be here and we will be naked, but we will have to start again to keep being competitive."

Messi has won eight LaLiga titles and four Champions Leagues among numerous other trophies at Barcelona.

Pique said there would never be another generation like that of Messi, Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Carles Puyol, Andres Iniesta and himself.

"There won't be more Messis and we don't expect there to be more, as there won't be another generation in La Masia like the one with Xavi, Busi, Puyol, Iniesta and me," he said.

"Let's hope there can be, but I don't think it will happen again."