As the future of Lionel Messi continues to dominate the headlines, Foot Mercato’s Santi Aouna has come up with a major update on the situation surrounding the Argentine.
The 35-year-old’s contract with PSG expires at the end of the season, and there have been countless rumours swirling about his next move. Links to the MLS, Saudi Arabia and a potential return to Barcelona have been doing the rounds for quite some time now.
PSG have already tabled a contract offer for Messi, but the Argentine is yet to make a firm decision on the matter and will reportedly only do so after understanding the club’s project.
According to Santi Aouna, though, as things stand, the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner’s main priority for the summer transfer window is to return to Barcelona.
The report states that Messi and PSG had a verbal agreement over a contract in December, but things have changed since last month.
Even though Messi’s father dismissed those reports as fake, Aouna claims that the superstar has had a falling out with manager Christophe Galtier. That, coupled with PSG’s UCL exit, recent poor results, and a tense relationship with fans is now forcing the Argentine to look elsewhere, with Barcelona an option.
The report states that Messi is regular contact with former teammate and current Barça manager Xavi Hernandez, while meetings between his father and club president Joan Laporta are also believed to have taken place.
The main obstacle for the Blaugrana in their bid to re-sign Messi is the club’s Financial Fair Play situation. Barcelona are under pressure to cut down their wage budget and are facing a battle to register the new contracts of Gavi, Ronald Araujo and others.
At this point, with La Liga giving no breathing space, the Catalans will need to find ways to improve their salary margin, possibly by player sales, so that they can accommodate Messi on their books.
More rumours, speculations, and twists and turns can be expected along the way until Messi makes a firm decision on his next future. Only time will tell if Barcelona can find the solutions to bring their former captain back to the club for one last dance.