Lionel Messi, the captain of current world champions Argentina, is reportedly set to leave Paris-Saint Germain (PSG) at the end of the ongoing Ligue 1 season. The contract extension of Messi at the Parc des Princes was already in doubt following the discontentment of fans towards him amidst the recent run of tough results for the club, one of which culminated in an untimely exit from the UEFA Champions League at the round of 16 stage.
Yesterday, the two-week suspension handed by PSG to the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner, to not play or train with the team or earn wages during this specific period, following his unsanctioned trip to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is believed to be the last straw.
According to multiple reports, Lionel Messi went to KSA to perform his duty as the official ambassador to the Saudi Tourism Authority, after the 3-1 home defeat for PSG against Lorient on Sunday without the club's official permission. But, Martin Arevalo of ESPN reported that Messi's visit to the Middle East was fine by his employers initially, but they somehow changed their mind in the meantime and called for a training session on Monday, which the 35-year-old couldn’t attend as he had already left.
Earlier today, on May 3, Fabrizio Romano, a well-known football journalist tweeted the following about Lionel Messi’ situation at PSG. He wrote, “Messi will leave Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the season. There are no doubts about that anymore. Behind the scenes, it’s now understood that Leo’s father Jorge communicated the decision to PSG already one month ago due to the project. It was the final breaking point.”
There are not many clubs in the world where Lionel Messi could go and play football, due to the potential strain his contract could put on the finances of any organisation. FC Barcelona could come calling for arguably their most beloved footballing star, but their financial debt issues could be a massive hindrance to the second coming of Messi. It would leave Saudi Arabia as a potential destination where the Argentinian great could end up playing football for the rest of his professional career, due to their financial might, which has been on full display in the last couple of years.