Well, it seems like the drama with Lionel Messi and FC Barcelona will never end. Even though the Argentine superstar had agreed on terms on a new deal with the team, not he won't be able to stay a Blaugrana.
According to the team, La Liga's regulations will prevent number 10 from fulfilling his lifelong dream of playing his entire career at Camp Nou. This is shocking considering how deep we are in the transfer market.
Now, Ronald Koeman's side will see their biggest icon just walk out the door for free, with teams from the English Premier League trying to make a run at him. Here, we break down his potential destinations.
FC Barcelona's Statement On Lionel Messi
(Transcript via Barcelona)
“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 (Spanish Liga regulations).
“As a result of this situation, Messi shall not be staying on at FC Barcelona. 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.”
3 Likely Destinations For Lionel Messi
3. Paris Saint-Germain
Let's be honest for a second here. Money has never been an issue for Paris Saint-Germain. More than that, Messi would have the opportunity to reunite with his friend Neymar while playing for his compatriot Mauricio Pochettino.
The French side has never hesitated to pull the trigger when it comes to breaking the bank. Moreover, Messi's arrival could prompt the sale of Kylian Mbappé, who's closely followed by Real Madrid.
The reigning UEFA Champions League winners have been tied to multiple players over the past couple of weeks. But having the opportunity to land Lionel Messi, Thomas Tuchel is likely to backpedal on his interest in Romelu Lukaku.
While it may be kind of tricky for Chelsea to lure the former Barcelona standout from a monetary standpoint, there's no doubt that it would be the best way to kick off their campaign a reigning champions.
1. Manchester City
And last but not least, Manchester City comes as the most likely destination for Lionel Messi. They had reportedly reached an agreement before Messi decided to play another season at Camp Nou last year.
Manchester City have the means - and the money - to get a deal done. More than that, it'll give Messi a chance to reunite with Pep Guardiola, who coached him during his most successful tenure in Spain.