Lionel Messi not to continue at Barcelona, confirms club
Lionel Messi has been playing for the club at the senior level since 2003 and would bring his career at Camp Nou to an end after 17 years, with 662 goals for the club.
In what comes as the biggest shock in football, Argentine superstar Lionel Messi would not be signing a new contract with Barcelona. It brings an end to his illustrious 17-year career at Camp Nou, where he has managed to score 662 goals, besides winning ten La Liga titles and four UEFA Champions League titles.
Barcelona confirmed the news on Thursday night, stating that a deal cannot be struck despite the club and Messi having reached an agreement. The club reasoned "financial and structural obstacles" to the situation.
"Despite FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi having reached an agreement and the clear intention of both parties to sign a new contract today, this cannot happen because of financial and structural obstacles. As a result of this situation, Messi shall not be staying on at FC Barcelona," said Barca in a statement.
"Both parties deeply regret that the wishes of the player and the club will ultimately not be fulfilled. FC Barcelona wholeheartedly expresses its gratitude to the player for his contribution to the aggrandisement of the club and wishes him all the very best for the future in his personal and professional life," it added.
As of now, it is unclear where Messi could be up to next. Among the rumoured possible destinations are English champion Manchester City and French giant Paris Saint-Germain.
At the same time, the United States of America's Inter Miami has also been tipped as one of his possible destinations. Also, a return to his boyhood Argentine club Newell's Old Boys cannot be ruled out either. However, he might have to take a big pay cut for the latter.
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