Barcelona legend Lionel Messi will join Major League Soccer side Inter Miami this summer amid links to Saudi Arabia, according to Spanish football expert Guillem Balague.
The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner will make his last appearance for Paris Saint-Germain in their final Ligue 1 outing of the campaign against Clermont at the end of May.
The 35-year-old’s departure after two years at PSG had long been anticipated and it was officially communicated by Cristophe Galtier at a press conference last week.
“I will take away that I have had the privilege of coaching the best football player ever, Leo Messi,” said Galtier.
“Saturday will be his last game at the Parc des Princes. I hope he will be welcomed in the best way possible.”
Messi left Barcelona for PSG amid a financial crisis at the Catalan club in 2021.
The Argentinian World Cup winner has helped the Parisians to two Ligue 1 titles but, despite some impressive statistics this season, his relationship with the club appeared to have soured.
Last month, he was suspended for two weeks after making an unauthorised trip to Saudi Arabia.
He has since been linked with a future move to the Middle East country, as well as the United States and a return to Barcelona.
And now the BBC‘s Spanish football expert Balague has revealed that Messi has chosen to move to the USA to play for David Beckham’s Inter Miami.
Balague wrote on the BBC Sport website: ‘The former Barcelona player is set to reject a more lucrative offer from Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal.
‘The Miami deal includes collaboration from brands like Adidas and Apple.’
With ‘no satisfactory offers’ coming from Europe, despite Messi’s desire to remain playing in the continent, it came down to a ‘straight choice between Inter Miami or Al-Hilal’.
And Balague has revealed the three reasons that has seen Messi choose Inter Milan over a lucrative transfer to Saudi Arabia.
Balague added: ‘He was heavily tipped to be favouring a move to Saudi Arabia, where he would have joined Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema in the league in a deal that could not be matched financially.
‘But Messi was ultimately tempted to Major League Soccer side Inter Miami for a variety of reasons including lifestyle, and a deal with big brands that extends beyond football.
‘He already owns a house in Miami, which he currently rents out.’