Lionel Messi leaves Barcelona and signs with PSG
Last August 5, Barcelona announced that Lionel Messi, a renowned football player, will be leaving their club. On FCBarcelona.com was the following statement:
“Despite FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi having reached an agreement and the clear intention of both parties to sign a new contract today, this cannot happen because of Spanish LaLiga regulations on player registration. As a result of this situation, Messi shall not be staying on at FC Barcelona. Both parties deeply regret that the wishes of the player and the club will ultimately not be fulfilled. FC Barcelona wholeheartedly expresses its gratitude to the player for his contribution to the aggrandisement of the club and wishes him all the very best for the future in his personal and professional life.”
This came as a surprise to many fans, especially those who followed his career path. Barcelona has been where he spent all his time, two decades in the duration of his career. It can be recalled that he has played 778 games for the club and has achieved a whopping 672 goals, making him one of the most valuable players of his generation.
During a press conference, Lionel Messi becomes tearful as he breaks his silence for the first time regarding his leaving F.C. Barcelona.
“I don’t know if I’ll be able to speak,” he said. “It still hasn’t sunk in that I’m leaving this club, that my life will be changing completely. It will be a difficult change for me and especially for my family. But we have to accept it and move on.”
Messi expressed: “After 21 years I’m leaving with my three Catalan-Argentine kids. We have lived in this city, this is our home. I’m just really grateful for everything, all my teammates, everyone who has been by my side.”
Messi reveals that he had wanted to stay in the club, and in order to have a new contract he even accepted a paycut of 50 percent. However, it still didn’t go according to plan.
According to the football player as reported by FirstPost.com, he stated: “I thought it was all sorted, but at the last minute because of the league (financial controls) thing it couldn’t happen…It was all agreed but it wasn’t meant to be. After the elections, I went to eat with the new president and we talked. And after that I was quite convinced that I would continue, that there would be no problem. My contract was never a problem. After that what happened, happened. I never had any doubts: we were decided, we would (stay).”
The Argentine professional footballer continued: “Laporta said we couldn’t do it because of the league (rules). I can tell you that I did all that I could to stay, because I wanted to stay. We were all convinced that it was going to happen. We had it all sorted out, there was no problem, and we were always honest with people. It wasn’t to be because of the reasons we said but from my point of view, I never misled anyone. I don’t know the full mechanics of (the league’s salary limit criteria), all I know is that it wasn’t to be because of the league, the club’s debt and the club didn’t want to get more into debt.”
He said of the matter: “We all thought we would reach a solution without any problems, but in the end it wasn’t possible…As the president said, the club is more important than anyone.” It can be noted that Messi asked before to leave at the end of the 2019-20 season, but this has not been permitted by former Barcelona president Bartomeu. “I wanted to leave then, but not now… I didn’t expect it, so it’s sad to have to say goodbye.”
As the conference went on, there were no talks of which club he would go to at the time. The 34-year-old football player revealed that he already received offers from various club after the announcement. He also admitted that it would be a possibility that he would be signed with Paris Saint-Germain.
Barcelona president Joan Laporta also spoke about the matter, stating that he does not want people to have false hope regarding the situation. “I don’t want to generate false hope,” Laporta said, on the topic of whether such a situation could be fixed. “During the course of negotiations, we’ve known of other offers for Messi. There was a time limit, for us and for [Messi’s camp], because they need time. The leagues are starting…The negotiations with Messi have ended and it’s brought us here without an agreement because of the salary limit. Leo wanted to stay, so he’s not happy. We all wanted him to stay, but now, like us, he is facing the reality of what’s happened. It’s a reality that can’t be changed.”
If Messi would have stayed at the club, then the wage-to-turnover percentage would be 110 per cent, and if Messi was removed, it would be 95 per cent which is above the FFP cut-off mark, as Laporta explained, as reported by indianexpress.com.
A few days after the conference, it was finally reported that Lionel Messi has signed with Paris St.-Germain, a French soccer powerhouse that are always anticipated in the Europe’s Champions League. This ended the heated bidding war for the renowned football player. The contract would last for about two seasons with the option of extending a year.
In a statement, Messi expressed: “I am excited to begin a new chapter of my career at Paris Saint-Germain. Everything about the club matches my football ambitions. I know how talented the squad and the coaching staff are here. I am determined to help build something special for the club and the fans, and I am looking forward to stepping out onto the pitch at the Parc des Princes.”
*Cover Photo/Thumbnail Photo from Instagram (@leomessi)