Lionel Messi ‘leaning towards’ PSG exit as he decides main priority
Argentina fans celebrate Lionel Messi goal in World Cup final
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Lionel Messi could decide to walk away from Paris Saint-Germain when his contract expires at the end of the current season, according to reports. The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner is only tied down until the summer as things stand and is yet to put pen to paper on an extension to the two-year deal he signed upon joining the French giants back in 2021.
It was recently reported that Messi was set to agree fresh terms with PSG after finding his feet in recent months off the back of a disappointing debut campaign in Paris. However, there is still a chance that he could seek pastures new after growing disillusioned with the idea of staying at PSG beyond the end of this season, according to Foot Mercato.
It is said that Messi is ‘leaning towards’ a summer exit after deciding not to prioritise talks with PSG’s hierarchy over a new and improved deal at the Parc des Princes. He has previously been tipped to move to the MLS with Inter Miami, who are owned by David Beckham, although he is thought to be reluctant to join them given that he wants to remain with the Argentina team for the Copa America in 2024.
The possibility of signing a new contract at PSG is not completely dead in the water, though, and there is every chance that Messi could ultimately end up staying with his current employers for at least another season. PSG are not expected to make a final decision on whether or not to renew his deal until their Champions League campaign draws to a close, which suggests there will be plenty of time to resolve the situation over the coming weeks.
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Messi struggled in his first season at PSG, notching six goals in 26 league appearances, although he fared better in the Champions League with five goals in seven matches. He is, however, enjoying a much better second campaign and has 10 goals and 10 assists from just 18 games in Ligue 1 thus far.
He has previously been linked with a romantic return to Barcelona, who he only left in 2021 because they were unable to commit to paying his wages due to their well-documented financial issues. It seems unlikely that such a move will come about in the not-too-distant future, although it remains to be seen whether the Catalan giants will explore the possibility of bringing him back if he fails to reach an agreement with PSG before the end of the season.
Club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi recently insisted that he believes Messi will eventually decide to stay in the French capital for the foreseeable future, saying towards the end of last year: “I think that if both want to extend the contract, he will stay.
“We are going to talk after the World Cup, but I confirm a thousand times he is very happy at the club, he’s having a great season, he’s adapted to French football. I think he wants to stay.”
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