LIONEL MESSI reportedly no longer wants to wait until the end of next season for his current contract with Barcelona to expire, with the six-time Ballon d’Or winner now asking to leave the club this summer, according to rumours.
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Fans will recall how Messi announced his retirement from international football after Argentina lost the second Copa America title to Chile, in as many years, in June 2016. La Pulga, however, reversed his decision a few months later and returned to national team contention for Argentina.
Now, only days after the Blaugrana recorded their worst-ever loss in the Champions League after going down 8-2 to Bayern Munich in the quarter-finals, its captain and legend has reportedly had it. The suggestion comes from the Brazilian journalist, Marcelo Bechler, who was the first journalist to break the Neymar transfer to PSG in 2017.
But no statement has come from Barcelona confirming or refuting the claim. The 33-year-old has been linked with Manchester City, Inter Milan and PSG, among several European clubs, but it remains to be seen what transpires in the next few days as speculation grows. Liverpool legend Graeme Souness opined that Manchester United should go all-in to try and sign Messi this summer:
“This would be the perfect week to put a bid in for the 33-year-old Argentinian and I could easily see him playing in Manchester – at either United or City.” But sceptics would think this, ultimately, on the part of La Liga’s record goalscorer, could just be another attempt at getting a pay-rise.
Notice should also be given to the plain and simple fact that with more and more reports coming out on his desire to leave, this might be the final nail in the coffin for the Argentine superstar’s time at Camp Nou. Messi arrived in Catalonia as a fresh-faced 13-year-old before making his first-team debut aged 17 in October 2004. But could this be how his storied time here comes to an end?