Lionel Messi’s future at Barcelona has been thrown into serious doubt after the club performed poorly on the pitch last season and have made massive personnel changes off the field.
There have been links with the attacker and some of Europe’s elite but even if he wanted to leave the Catalan club this summer with one year left on his deal, it could prove tricky for him to do so.
Mundo Deportivo report that the LaLiga giants will tell the 33-year-old that he can only leave if a club is willing to pay his monstrous £631m release clause or he will be staying put.
If Barca were to budge on their outrageous asking price, then there are plenty of clubs exploring the option of signing the six-time Ballon d’Or winner.
PSG, Inter, Juventus, Manchester United and Manchester City, managed by Messi’s former Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola, have all reportedly thrown their hat in the ring should Messi become available.
The Argentine has reportedly now held talks with new Barca boss Ronald Koeman to discuss his future after it was revealed that he was ‘more out than in’ at the Nou Camp.
According to Spanish outlet Sport, each of the aforementioned clubs would have enough pulling power to attract Messi should he leave Spain – but his price would prove to be the massive obstacle to getting a deal done.
Argentinian outlets reported that Messi was left furious after the fact he held a meeting with the new boss became public.
Koeman opened up about Messi’s situation and said: ‘He’s still got a contract and is still a Barcelona player. At this point I need to speak to him because he is the captain.
‘’We need to work with him and speak with various players. We need to make some decisions but in Messi’s case I hope he stays with us.
‘’I don’t know if I have to convince Messi [to stay], whether it’s that or not. He is the best player in the world and the best player in the world you want in your team, you don’t want him playing against you.
‘’As a coach I would love to work with Messi because he wins matches. If he’s at the ability and level he has always shown I’d be more than happy for him to stay.’’