Will Lionel Messi really leave Barcelona this summer?

Will Lionel Messi really leave Barcelona this summer?

The last few days have been interesting when it comes to Barcelona legend Lionel Messi. The Argentinian has become embroiled in a row with the club’s sporting director Eric Abidal after the Frenchman questioned the effort of some players under former boss Ernesto Valverde. The row has caused speculation that Messi could leave the Catalan giants in the near future. However, could the unthinkable really happen and Messi leave for pastures new?

Messi has a release clause in his contract

In an extraordinary situation, Messi could leave the reigning Spanish champions on a free transfer this summer. This is due to the number of contracts he has signed with the Blaugrana and puts Barcelona in a bad predicament.

If Messi did leave Catalonia, then obviously every major club in the world be in want to sign the brilliant Argentinian. The deal would not exactly be a free one when his reported £50million in wages is taking into account. That means that probably only a select few clubs in the European game would have the finances to sign the forward this summer. It would be interesting to see which clubs chanced their arm at signing the forward.

Messi reportedly unhappy

Messi is obviously unhappy at the fact that Abidal has questioned the players, without naming names of individuals. However, his frustration and unhappiness have reportedly been simmering in the last few seasons. One particular issue seems to have bothered the star, which is the clubs dealing’s in the transfer market.

It was widely reported throughout the European media that Messi hoped that Brazilian star Neymar would return to the Camp Nou last summer. However, Barcelona could not tie up a deal for their former forward and Messi questioned their efforts.

Most other players would not be able to get away with publicly criticising his clubs management. However, this is Messi, who is one of the most important players in the history of not just Barcelona, but also the beautiful game. Many would claim he is the greatest player to have ever played the game. Obvious Barcelona does not want Messi to leave, as his exit would be devastating to a team that has relied on his skills for such a long time.

There have been stories that Messi may leave in the past. However, it seems the little forward has never been closer to leaving the Catalan club than he is right now.

Manchester City favourites to sign Messi

If the unthinkable happens and Messi leaves, then it seems that Manchester City is his most likely destination.

City boss Pep Guardiola previously managed Messi at Barcelona and they are known to have a very good relationship. The fact City executives Txiki Begiristain and Ferran Soriano are also familiar with Messi also add to the intrigue.

The likes of Juventus, PSG and even clubs in Messi’s home country are all high in the betting to be the forward’s next destination. What happens in the next few months with Messi’s situation could well be fascinating. In truth, at this stage, it seems there is a very real possibility that Lionel Messi could well leave Barcelona this summer. It would certainly be the story of the summer. It may well be one of the biggest transfer stories ever.

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