Two days ago, on the 8th of August, Lionel Messi took center-stage during a press conference where he confirmed that he will be leaving Barcelona. It was an emotional announcement for not only the audience, but also Messi himself as he ended his over two decade unbroken relationship with the club.
672 goals and 778 appearances since making his senior debut at FC Barcelona, Messi had to make the painful decision to depart from his long-time team that he has spent the entirety of his career at. The La Liga Club was unable to fulfill Messi’s new contract due to “financial and structural obstacles”, leaving their star player to be a free agent as of July 1st, a day after his previous Barcelona contract expired on June 30.
“I wanted to stay more than anything” Messi says as the tears stream down his face. It really was an emotional press conference, for him and everyone around. He hadn’t even said a word before he began to sob on the lectern.
“It’s time to say goodbye. It’s been a long number of years. I arrived aged just 13, as a little boy. 21 years later, it’s time to move on. […]I’m so thankful to Barcelona and the career I’ve had here, the trophies I’ve won, the defeats also helped me learn and grow. We had far more good times than bad, with so many beautiful moments, winning trophies. I’ve got a lot of amazing memories.”
Messi recounts his moments, his career, at Barcelona as the press conference solidifies everyone’s greatest fears.
So what now for Messi? He did say that the thing that really mattered was not where he will be playing next season, but where he will not be playing, Barcelona, and as well went on to deny already accepting a deal from Paris Saint-Germain.
We do know, however, that Messi has received has received a formal two-year contract offer from PSG. The French club has offered him an initial two-year £25m per year deal, after tax, plus bonuses. And now? The six-time Ballon d’Or winner and his representatives have now reviewed and considered the proposition carefully and have come to a conclusion. The conclusion being that Messi will join the French club.
Lionel Messi has now officially left the nest that is Barcelona and joined up with Paris Saint-Germain. PSG and Messi will have the option of extending his stay in the French capital by a third year, while the forward will also receive a £25m signing-on fee. Now that his signing is sealed, with the added bonus of being reunited with Neymar with whom he won two La Liga titles, three Copa del Reys and the Champions League during their time together at Barcelona, we just have to wait and see what Messi has in store for us in the coming years.
By: Joshua Osifo
See Also: Messi Is Set To Depart Barcelona