Lionel Messi’s career at Barcelona has come to a shocking ending after both parties struggled to come to an agreement on a contract extension. With that being said, the Barca legend becomes a free agent immediately and will be able to sign with any club he desires.
Of course, there will be a lot of teams vying for his services, but it won’t come cheap. While he won’t have a transfer fee after his deal in Spain ran out on June 30th, his wages are extremely high. But, there are a few sides in Europe who could potentially afford the striker.
Here are the 3 best destinations for Lionel Messi’s next team.
Lionel Messi destinations for new team
Okay, the Blues have money. They were willing to splash the cash on Erling Haaland and now that he’s not available, the Champions League title-holders are chasing the signature of Inter Milan hitman Romelu Lukaku, who would cost around £130 million. Well, with Lionel Messi now available, they need to forget about the Belgian and shift their focus to luring the Argentina legend to Stamford Bridge.
Thomas Tuchel has been doing everything imaginable to bring in a No. 9 this summer after Timo Werner struggled to adapt to England in his debut season. They need a proven finisher who can help them compete for PL titles. Messi would absolutely fit the bill. While he is getting older, his versatility in the final third would undoubtedly be an instant hit. The 34-year-old can thread a pass like nobody’s business but also dribble through a whole backline and fire home goals.
Roman Abramovich is never afraid to front up with money, either. If he could actually make Lionel Messi a Chelsea player, it would surely result in titles.
What about a reunion with Neymar? We know that Messi and the Brazilian absolutely loved their time together at the Camp Nou, winning a Champions League and two La Liga trophies. Add in the fact that Paris gaffer Mauricio Pochettino is also Argentinian and this seems like it would be a match made in heaven.
However, the Ligue 1 standouts have already spent their fair share of coin this summer, signing Gini Wijnaldum, Gianluigi Donnarumma, and Sergio Ramos, and Achraf Hakimi. But, all of them except for Hakimi joined PSG on free transfers. That being said, could Paris really afford Lionel Messi? The thought of a frontline with Neymar, Messi, and Kylian Mbappe is mind-boggling and would absolutely wreak havoc on any opposition across the continent.
But, Messi would probably have to take a pay cut to join Paris. There have been rumors that Mbappe could be on his way to Real Madrid, but that most likely won’t happen until next summer. Nevertheless, this could happen. PSG is backed by financial stability which may give them the ability to sign Lionel Messi.
This is probably the biggest longshot of them all considering Man City just signed Jack Grealish for a record-breaking £100 million from Aston Villa. They’re also still trying to sign Harry Kane, who is unhappy at Tottenham. However, there were rumblings last summer that Messi was interested in reuniting with former Barca boss Pep Guardiola at the Etihad. After all, the duo enjoyed the utmost success together in Spain and could do so again in arguably the top league in the world.
Could you imagine an attack consisting of Lionel Messi, Kevin De Bruyne, and Jack Grealish? The rest of the Premier League would literally have no chance. It would basically be a cakewalk to another title for the Citizens. Also, if Messi joined Man City, he could potentially join their sister club New York City FC down the road. He has voiced his desire to play in the MLS in the latter years of his career.
Guardiola however said earlier this summer there is no chance the club has the funds to sign another big name. Clearly, that’s not the case after securing the signature of Grealish. With Kane set to cost an absolute bundle (£150 million), City could try and bring in Lionel Messi instead. Seeing one of the best footballers to ever live play in the Premier League would surely be a thrill.
It’s going to be extremely interesting to see where he ends up in the next couple of weeks. Although his Barcelona career ended on awful terms, whoever wins the Lionel Messi sweepstakes will be absolutely buzzing.