What future for Lionel Messi after PSG?
After two seasons at PSG, Lionel Messi is looking for a new and perhaps ultimate challenge, soon to be 36 years old. Three destinations stand out: Saudi Arabia, Barcelona or Miami.
Lionel Messi played his last match with PSG this Saturday, against Clermont, under the whistles of the Parc des Princes.
Saudi Arabia: magot and Ronaldo?
Reuniting Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in the same championship has something to seduce … In any case the Saudis. The oil kingdom dreams of this duo as a showcase for the promotion of a probable candidacy for the organization of a World Cup. A crazy challenge, but commensurate with the financial power of the Gulf State, which has already brought the Portuguese to Al-Nassr thanks to a golden bridge.
Already under contract with the Saudi tourist office, Messi could follow, several media evoking a fabulous offer from the Al-Hilal club valued at 400 million euros per year. According to the Spanish newspaper Sport, an announcement could be made as early as Tuesday. There remains the sporting aspect, not the least: will the seven-time Ballon d’Or isolate himself in this weak championship one year from the Copa America 2024, which could be his last international event?
Barcelona: class and nostalgia?
Returning to Barcelona would have a completely different flavor for the “Pulga”, who would find his former teammate Xavi there, now a coach. Far more romantic, of course, than Saudi greed. It would be a great story but the operation is complex for a Barça under budgetary pressure. The club is said to be still awaiting validation by the Spanish league of its “viability plan”, which includes the extensions of several key players as well as the potential return of Messi.
In order not to exceed the salary cap, Barca have to reduce their spending by another 200 million euros. Messi close in hearts, yet so far away.
Miami: family and living environment?
This hypothesis comes up less frequently but it does exist: Inter Miami, in Florida, in a North American championship which has always eyed South American stars at the end of their careers like Pelé, Kaka, Gonzalo Higuain or currently Douglas Costa.
The option has the advantage of bringing the family closer to Argentina, to Miami, where the Messis already have a base. In this ideal living environment, the star would find another football star: David Beckham, one of the co-owners of the Florida franchise.
Although less famous than its European cousins, the MLS is also a championship of a level much higher than the Saudi one. An ideal compromise for Messi, who turns 36 on June 24? The next few days will tell.
Neymar pays tribute to his ‘brother’
Neymar paid tribute on Sunday to his “brother” Lionel Messi, on the departure of the Parisian club after two seasons which “did not go as we thought”. “It was a pleasure to share two more years with you. Good luck for your new stage and be happy. I love you,” said the Brazilian striker of PSG, injured for several months.
Neymar and Messi shared four seasons at FC Barcelona between 2013 and 2017, winning a Champions League in 2015.
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