Barcelona have seemingly thrown a late jab at Lionel Messi after his decision to join Inter Miami on a free transfer this summer was confirmed on Wednesday night.
The Argentine was out of contract with Paris Saint Germain, and had been strongly linked with moves to both Saudi Arabia side Al-Hilal and Spanish giants Barcelona. However, in a shock turn of events, he has confirmed his decision to join the MLS outfit Inter Miami, ending speculation around his future.
Regarding a potential return to the Camp Nou, he explained that “I really wanted to return to Barça, I had that dream. But after what happened two years ago, I did not want to be in the same situation again, leaving my future in the hands of someone else...”.
“Many, really many things were still missing in order to make my return to Barça happen”, he continued, “I didn’t want to be responsible for them to sell players or reduce salaries. I was tired”.
In an official statement, however, Barcelona couldn’t resist taking a jab at their club legend for seemingly taking the easy way out rather than waiting for a potential Barcelona reunion later in the transfer window.
‘On Monday, June 5, Jorge Messi, the player’s father and representative, informed Club President Joan Laporta of the player’s decision to join Inter Miami, despite having been presented with a proposal from Barça, in consideration of the desire of both FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi for him to once again wear blaugrana’, they wrote.
‘President Laporta understood and respected Messi’s decision to want to compete in a league with fewer demands, further away from the spotlight and the pressure he has been subject to in recent years.
Both Joan Laporta and Jorge Messi also agreed to work together to promote a proper tribute from Barça fans to honor a footballer who has been, is, and always will be beloved by Barça.’
Messi is now expected to join up with former teammate Sergio Busquets, while reports suggest that Luis Suarez could also be Miami bound in a bid to reunite the former Barca stars.