Sunday, November 28, 2021

Lionel Messi To Join Neymar At PSG After Signing Sensational Two-year Deal

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Paris Saint-Germain are to offer Lionel Messi a two-year contract in what could be the most sensational transfer deal in history.

Talks opened late on Thursday evening – within hours of Barcelona announcing Messi’s departure after 21 years at the Spanish giants.

A meeting is now scheduled to take place on Saturday between Messi’s father and representative Jorge and the PSG hierarchy with a detailed proposal due to be put forward. The expectation is that, remarkably, the 34-year-old, who is nevertheless a free agent, will now sign.

Read Also: Lionel Messi Leaves Barcelona After Two Decades
PSG had quickly distanced themselves from suggestions after the Messi announcement that they would be signing the Argentinean – given the club is running a financial deficit – but since then they have crunched the numbers and decided that they can make a deal work. They have also been encouraged by how positive Messi is about joining them. At the same time, the player’s camp has appreciated the speed of PSG’s response and not least because of the constraints of Uefa’s Financial Fair Play rules under which they are operating.

If PSG do sign Messi it will delight his former Barcelona team-mate Neymar – who has lobbied hard to sign the world’s best player and the current Ballon D’Or holder – but will raise further question marks over the future of Kylian Mbappe who has just one more year left on his contract but has, so far, resisted attempts for him to extend his deal.

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Read Also: “I Am Very Happy In Paris” – Neymar Signs New £30m Per Season Contract At Paris Saint-Germain
PSG’s priority had been to persuade Mbappe to sign but the sudden availability of Messi – and with Manchester City stepping away from the deal – has led to them considering whether they can make the move work financially.

Sources have suggested that Manchester United may also have shown some interest in signing Messi but it appears negotiations have moved quickly with his father, Jorge, over the past 24 hours and PSG are now firmly the favourites.

City manager Pep Guardiola has publicly ruled his club out of making a move for Messi – and this has been backed up privately by sources – while Barcelona president Joan Laporta made it clear on Friday that the announcement the forward was leaving was not an act of brinksmanship aimed at the salary limits imposed by La Liga.

Messi, Barcelona’s all-time leading goalscorer, had agreed a new five-year contract on reduced wages – but the club still had to slash their wage bill to afford him, and were unable to do so.

“Leo wanted to stay, so he’s not happy,” Laporta said. “We all wanted him to stay. For him, he has to confront reality. It’s a reality that can’t be changed and he knows I wish him the best wherever he goes.”

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Laporta added that he did not want to give “false hope” on “hypothetical” ideas that would see keeping Messi possible. “This negotiation has ended,” he said.

It now appears PSG will be his destination.

Photo Credit: Getty

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