Lionel Messi is moving on to a new team for the first time in his career.
Lionel Messi is one of the greatest soccer players of all time and when all is said and done, he could very well be considered the best. Just last month, Messi won his first-ever Copa America title, and since then, he has been basking in his success. In the midst of all of this, however, Messi has been dealing with contract negotiations. His contract with Barcelona expired just a few months ago, and there was optimism that he would be able to return to the club that he's spent his whole life with.
Unfortunately, due to LaLiga regulations, Barcelona won't be able to sign Messi for the upcoming year. He is simply too expensive for them, and if he were to get re-signed, Barcelona would be breaking various salary cap regulations. In a statement, Barcelona explained just how regrettable this situation is.
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"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."
Moving forward, it is unknown as to where Messi will play. There have been rumors that he would want to come to the MLS, although there is no guarantee that such a thing would ever happen. However, there are certainly a lot of teams interested in the superstar, and it will be interesting to track where he lands.