Lionel Messi announced his desire to leave Barcelona FC on Aug. 25. But now Messi has decided to stay at Barca.
The club’s release clause of £631 million has made it hard for Messi to leave. The club he transferred to would have to pay the fee.
His legal team argued that he has the clause that allowed him to leave at any time. However, the club and league argued that because it was after the June 10 deadline that the release clause holds.
Messi’s father, Jorge, went to Barcelona on Wednesday to talk to club president Josep Bartomeu. The meeting was positive and constructive, with Bartomeu talking about the necessity of Messi at Barca.
Messi didn’t show up to manager Ronald Koeman’s practices this week in hopes to continue fighting the legal issue. However, he will be heading back to pre-season training.
This season will be different under the management of Koeman, who is hopeful to turn the team around. There is also the issue of many of the long-time players leaving. Messi will have to learn how to play with the younger players.
Manchester City seemed to be the major runner for getting Messi. However, after the star met up with Pep Guardiola, he advised for Messi to stay at Barca for another year. No team is ready to handle the financial burden of the release clause.
But Messi is trying to seem optimistic about his stay in Barcelona.
“I would never in my life go against the club’s judgment and that is why I am staying in Barcelona. It was a tough decision. I always said I wanted to end my career here and I do,” Messi said.
After 20 years with the club, the star still has strong loyalties even when he’s been unhappy there. His contract is set to expire June 2021 where he can leave on a free transfer. That is when his probable exit will be.