Lionel Messi to join American side Inter Miami in the upcoming season as he nears the twilight of his career. PSG announced Messi’s departure last week but his destination was not confirmed as Barcelona were trying to get their finances in order to sign Messi and Al Hilal was also in the running with lucrative offers. But the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner has made a final decision on his future and has told Barcelona he will head to MLS and sign for Inter Miami.
Before Messi's transfer confirmation to the MLS, Spanish giants Barcelona and Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal had shown their interest in signing the Argentine's services, however, the record seven-time Ballon d'Or winner announced that he will join David Beckham's Inter Miami in the summer.
ESPN quoted Messi saying, "I have made the decision that I am going to Miami. I still don't have it agreed upon 100 percent and a few things are needed, but, well, we decided to continue my path there. After winning the World Cup and not being able to return to Barcelona, it was my turn to go to the league of the United States to live football in another way and to enjoy the day-to-day more. Obviously, with the same responsibility and desire to play well and do things well as always. But in a calmer way."
" We are pleased that Lionel Messi has stated that he intends to join Inter Miami and Major League Soccer this summer," MLS said in a written statement.
Spanish journalist Guillem Balague revealed that he will be embarking on the next stage of his career in America at Inter Miami. With the aid of corporate sponsors Apple and Adidas, Inter Miami has prevailed in the fight to recruit Messi. According to The Athletic, Adidas has given the World Cup champion a profit-sharing arrangement to further their long-term connection while he will receive a portion of the MLS Season Pass earnings on Apple TV+. The deal with Miami would likely include the option to purchase a percentage of an MLS team after his time in the US has ended.
Messi’s father and agent confirmed earlier this week that the player and him want to join Barcelona but their inability to offer Messi a proper contract stands in their way. Barcelona are scrambling to offer Messi a proper contract because of their financial issues.
The club had seen their viability plan given the OK by La Liga but still must sell players to incorporate Messi, and there’s no guarantee yet they can make the numbers add up. Al Hilal representatives had travelled to Paris to get Messi’s signature but his wish at the time remained Barcelona.