In an interview with Sport and Mundo Deportivo published this evening, Lionel Messi has confirmed that he will sign for MLS side Inter Miami, putting an end to a short-lived transfer saga that also saw him linked with a move to Saudi Arabia as well as a return to Barcelona.
The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner played his final match of a two-year spell with Paris Saint-Germain last Saturday, leaving the French capital as a double Ligue 1 winner. Despite disappointment on the continental stage, his 16 goals and 16 assists in Ligue 1 place him among the best performers in the league this past campaign.
In the interview, Messi explains that he initially wanted to go back to Catalonia, but that he did not want to find himself in the same drawn-out circumstances that led to his initial departure. He explains that he would have left his fate “in the hands of someone else“, as a result of the sales that Barcelona would have to make to complete his signing.
The World Cup winner goes on: “I’ve decided to go to Miami. It’s not 100% completed yet. There are still a few things left but we’ve decided to go down that path.”
“I had offers from other European teams, but I didn’t even consider them, because my idea was to go to Barcelona, and if that didn’t work out, then to leave European football. Especially after winning the World Cup, which is what I was missing to close out my career over here, and to go experience the American league in another way, enjoying daily life a lot more. I’ll have that same responsibility of wanting to win and to do things well, but with a lot more tranquility.”
GFFN | Raphaël Jucobin