Inter Miami CLOSE to signing Messi as Barcelona miss out

FT Desk
FT Desk
  • Updated: 27 Nov 2022 16:29 GMT
  • 3 min read
Lionel Messi, Vice City

Inter Miami are very close to completing the signing of Lionel Messi, according to The Times.

The MLS side, co-owned by David Beckham, are reported to be in the final stages of completing a deal for the Argentine legend.

Messi will join Inter Miami when his contract at PSG expires at the end of the season.

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The deal will make Messi the highest-paid player in the history of Major League Soccer.

The Times reports that Beckham has been key in pulling off the deal due to his contacts at PSG and his relationship with Messi through Adidas.

Messi himself has made the decision to move to Miami as he has a house there and he enjoys his holidays there with his family.

It has always been Messi’s plan to play in the United States before retiring.

The MLS has also been naturally keen to assist in making the move happen ass, even more so given the next World Cup in 2026 will be co-hosted by the United States.

No Barcelona move for Messi

The news comes as a big blow not only to PSG but also to Barcelona, who were hoping to bring Messi back to Camp Nou next season.

The 35-year-old joined PSG from Barcelona on a free transfer in 2021.

Messi broke virtually every record during over 20 years at Camp Nou, scoring an incredible 672 goals in 778 games.

He also won 10 La Liga titles and four Champions League, in addition to numerous other individual and team honours.

But Barcelona were unable to sign him to a new deal in the summer of 2021 – mainly for financial reasons - leading to an infamous farewell press conference in which Messi broke down and cried.

Messi scored only four goals in Ligue 1 last season

Messi scored only four goals in Ligue 1 last season

Messi endured a difficult first season in Paris, scoring just four Ligue 1 goals all campaign and performing poorly as PSG were dumped out of the Champions League – capitulating from 2-0 up on aggregate to lose 3-2 to Real Madrid in the last-16.

However, he has been in fine form so far this campaign, already registering 12 goals and 14 assists.

He also has two goals in the first two matches of the World Cup for Argentina, scoring in the defeat to Saudi Arabia and win over Mexico.