Lionel Messi to be offered an equity stake in club, he has another preference
| Last updated
As rumours continue to swirl surrounding the future of Lionel Messi, reports have emerged that an interested club are willing to go all out to sign the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner this summer.
Major League Soccer side Inter Miami, who have been long-term admirers of the Argentine forward, are set to offer Messi an equity stake in the club – a lucrative offer that is admirable, to say the least.
But according to the Independent, Messi has his eyes on another prize.
The 35-year-old, who is out of contract at current club Paris Saint-Germain this summer, wants to stay in Europe until 2024. Why? Because he wants to lift the Champions League again before he retires.
Whether that be with PSG or Barcelona – his former side who are reportedly interested in making a move – is yet to be finalised. But it looks like he will remain in Europe.
That suggestion will be a huge blow to the likes of Inter Miami and Saudi Pro League side Al Hilal, who recently submitted an ‘official bid’ for Messi and did so alongside an eye-watering salary.
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano claims the Saudi Arabian club have offered the forward a salary worth more than €400 million, although again, it is claimed that Messi’s ‘absolute priority’ is to remain in Europe.
Romano also says that Barca are awaiting Financial Fair Play to ‘send bid and open talks,’ with the La Liga side’s financial struggles well documented.
The above report from the Independent suggests the Barcelona hierarchy have yet to contact Messi about a transfer but the club's vice president, Rafael Yust, said they have been in touch with Messi and his representatives.
“Leo and his family know the affection I have for them," he said.
“I participated in the negotiations which unfortunately did not lead to a certain result. I’ve always had and I have this thorn in my side that Leo couldn’t continue at our club.
“Messi knows how much we appreciate him. I would love for him to come back. We’re in contact, of course, with them.”
Thoughts on the future of the World Cup winner? Where should he go next?
Let us know in the comments.