It is already a fact, Lionel Messi will say goodbye to the Eiffel Tower at the end of this season. It was known unofficially, but the word of the coach of Paris Saint-Germain, Christophe Galtier, announcing that the Rosario will play his last game at the Parc des Princes against Clermont put the formal framework to his definitive departure when his contract that lasted two years ends. And the question still floats: where will the best footballer in the world play from now on? All eyes, of course, point to Catalonia. However, a return to Barcelona does not appear as a tangible option in these decisive hours for the future of the world champion.
The presentation of the new shirt that PSG made on its social networks dislocated more than one. It is that among his figures appeared that of Messi as a model posing with the brand new jacket. Despite the suspicions, that did not mean a change in the relationship between the Argentine and the French institution. The end in the adventure of French football is written. He says goodbye with the celebration of the recent League title achieved, amid resistance from the hard core of Parisian fans.
Messi with the new PSG shirt
And, as his father, Jorge Messi, said, Leo will make a determination after this goodbye. He has to decide his new destination and that choice will be based on the offers he has on the table, so Barcelona does not appear as a viable possibility in that sense, at least until the time of publication of this article.
Why? Mainly because from the blaugrana club presided over by Joan Laporta did not send him a formal contract offer for now. And the wait for the 10 of the Argentine National Team has a limit. While there have been informal talks for weeks between Barcelona and Messi's entourage, they never materialized in a formal contract for the 35-year-old.
Photo: FRANCK FIFE / AFP.
The main reason is that the culé team is not yet in a financial position not only to incorporate Messi but to register new players. Nor is it known if before August 31, when the LaLiga pass book closes, he will be able to specify it. And, as Clarín was able to confirm, Messi's intention is not to wait until that date, but to make a faster decision.
It is that the ghosts of his traumatic departure from Barça seem to intimidate him again. Leo had a hard time throughout the tug of war with Laporta in his last months in the Catalan entity. And the plot twist of the end ended up crumbling: when it seemed that he was staying, they called his father to inform him that there was no way to renew the link. It is enough to remember his sorrowful crying at the farewell press conference to understand the stress he experienced in those turbulent days.
And he doesn't want to go through something similar. It is that at all times from Barcelona they let him know that the situation in one way or another was going to be resolved, something that later did not happen. Any similarity to the present may not be a mere coincidence. In the current informal conversations they let him know that they are working against the clock to get the LaLiga okey to the viability plan presented. The promise to send you the contract offer is delayed week by week and the time is drastically shortened.
At this time, the only certain offer that Messi has is that of Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia, who proposed a contract of 400 million dollars. The strategy of the Arabs, in addition to the juicy figure, is to seduce him with reissuing the historic rivalry with Cristiano Ronaldo, currently in the Al-Nassr, in addition to adding other renowned figures in Arab football, such as Karim Benzema.
Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, Saudi Arabia's sports minister, referred to the situation of Messi and Benzema, appealed for calm to journalists and said: "We have to wait for the clubs (for PSG and Real Madrid) to announce their departures officially." Something that is already happening.
Will Leo Messi choose to go to a less competitive league when he still feels at the top of his level? It may not be ideal, it is clear, but in this scenario nothing is ruled out. Nor the possibility of landing in the United States, more precisely in the Inter of Miami that has among its main shareholders David Beckham and that plans to go with everything for La Pulga.
Will any other alternatives appear on the horizon? Anything can happen and, it is insisted, nothing is ruled out because nothing is resolved so far. Next week will be presented as key to the decision of Lionel Messi who sees how the weeks and days pass without receiving the formal proposal of Barcelona to realize a return that for now is unfeasible.