Barcelona legend Carles Puyol has sent a heartfelt message to Lionel Messi after the Catalan giants announced on Thursday that the Argentine would not be continuing his career at the Camp Nou.
The former skipper took to Instagram with an initial message after the news broke that read, “tough day but #viscaelBarça” with two blaugrana heart emojis.
Puyol then added a second post with a picture of the two players together and the words, “Thank you very much for everything #leo, we can never thank you for everything you have given us, I wish you the best. #viscaelbarça.”
Messi now looks set to leave Barcelona after 20 years with the club following an announcement that talks over a new contract had broken down. The Argentine’s deal expired at the end of June but he had been expected to pen a new deal before the start of the new season.
Barcelona said in a surprisingly brief statement that although both parties had reached an agreement on a new contract, “this cannot happen because of Spanish LaLiga regulations on player registration.”
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Shocked Messi Heading to PSG?
Messi has reportedly been left shocked by Barca’s announcement which comes just over a week before the start of the new La Liga campaign. The 34-year-old is not expected to make a statement yet on what happens next but does want the chance to say goodbye to supporters.
Rumors of where Messi may play next have already emerged with French side Paris Saint-Germain unsurprisingly mentioned as a possible destination. Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has reported there is already “direct contact” between PSG and Messi.
Such a move would see Messi link up once again with former Barcelona teammate Neymar. The Brazilian admitted back in December 2020 that he wanted to play with the Argentina international again in an interview with ESPN.
PSG has already been busy in the summer transfer window. The club has added free agent Sergio Ramos from Real Madrid, full-back Achraf Hakimi from Inter, and goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.
Premier League champions Manchester City also appear an option for Messi. The Citizens have just signed midfielder Jack Grealish, remain interested in Harry Kane but could go for the Barcelona legend, according to Marca.
Messi’s Father Reacts to Bombshell
Messi’s father and agent, Jorge, had flown to Barcelona for contract talks and has reacted to the news that his son will not be continuing at Barcelona. The 63-year-old thinks it suits Barcelona for Messi not to continue because of the club’s financial constraints, according to Deportes Cuatro.
President Joan Laporta will hold a press conference on Friday where it’s expected he will provide more details regarding why talks with the Messi family broke down and what’s happening at the club with transfers and salaries due to La Liga’s salary cap.
Supporters will be keen to hear from Laporta, who said several times “everything was on track” and he was confident that he would be able to keep hold of Messi, only to see the deal fall apart late in the day.