Josep Maria Bartomeu-the president of Barcelona-must have heard the fax machine’s whirling and shouting and feared the worst. A transfer request has been handed to the greatest player of all time. About to get in panic.
In showdown talks, Ronald Koeman has allegedly told Lionel Messi that his “privileges in the squad are gone.” Which was the last straw for Messi, who presumably thought: “the privilege of having me in your team is over too.”
As is to be expected, the transfer gossip has gone into overdrive. Sport claim Manchester United are ‘in position’ to make a move for Messi, Esporte Interativo say he is desperate to reuinite with Pep Guardiola, while Rio Ferdinand “just heard that Frank Lampard is now in for Messi”.
— Glasgow Live Sport (@GLiveSport) August 25, 2020
And if this isn’t confirmation of his move to Everton, we don’t know what is…
— Benj Winstanley ➐ (@benjwinstanley) August 25, 2020
Reports say Messi had a clause in his contract that would allow him to walk away from the club for free if activated.
The clause expired in late May. Yet Messi ‘s squad insists that due to the shortened season it will be shortened until the end of August. A bitter court battle would ensue. Messi ‘s new release clause is set at €700 m, which might place him just outside Fulham’s reach, who would of course sign him.
But Metro claims the Catalan club will accept a £200million bid for the Argentine magician, a world record fee. Nonetheless, along with his earnings, which the study reports are reportedly £970,000-a-week, can any club in world football afford him?
Gabriel Jesus to the Barca rescue
A Barcelona without Messi is also set to be out next season without Luis Suarez, with Koeman apparently willing to let another goal scoring kingpin depart the Nou Camp. And the Dutchman has named Gabriel Jesus as the solution to what next season will be a bit of a lack of goals – he’s no fool …
According to Globo Esporte, Barcelona is said to have already made contact with City about the transfer, with the Brazilian relative youth considered to be a key factor.