Lionel Messi shocked football fans across the world when he decided to move to MLS side Inter Miami last summer. It was totally unexpected and a return to Barcelona was predicted by everyone. His contract with PSG had come to an end, finishing his disappointing time in France where he was jeered by fans, also in his final outing.
The Argentine superstar led his country to 2022 World Cup glory, but failed to get Champions League glory for PSG. Messi departed Barcelona in an unceremonious manner in August 2021, joining PSG but it never worked out for him with the Paris-based outfit.
So when he became a free agent last year, all signs pointed towards Barcelona. But the Catalan club’s dire financial condition proved to be a stumbling block, although Messi reportedly was willing to take a huge wage cut.
Messi was also rumored to have received a huge offer from the Saudi Pro League, but in the end decided to join Inter Miami. Speaking on Messi’s failed return to Barcelona last summer, La Liga president Javier Tebas revealed that the deal was ‘close’ to happen.
“Messi’s return to Barcelona last summer? Personally, because of Messi’s and Barca’s desire, I saw it close. When there is that affection, many economic issues are left aside. I saw it possible. I saw it close. I am sure that Messi would have liked to retire at Barca,” he said.
Messi signed a two-and-a-half year contract with Miami, which is set to expire next year. It also looks like he could appear in the next World Cup, so a move to Europe could be expected from the Barcelona legend. If a move to Europe actually materialises, Barcelona could be the favourites to sign him and his retirement dream can come true.
Meanwhile, Messi is going through a poor phase with Inter Miami. The MLS side are currently in their pre-season tour and have been in bad form. It was summed up by Messi’s absence in their friendly in Hong Kong. Messi was benched and didn’t make a substitute appearance which angered fans, who had spent a lot of money on tickets. Inter Miami crashed to defeats against Al Hilal (3-4), Al Nassr (0-6) a shootout loss to Vissel Kobe.