BREAKING NEWS: Lionel Messi’s move to Saudi Arabia is a ‘DONE DEAL’, with the world’s best footballer taking £522MILLION contract at Al-Hilal and reigniting his Cristiano Ronaldo rivalry
- Lionel Messi has completed a sensational move to Saudi Arabia, state reports
- The world-class forward is said to have signed a massive £522million contract
- Deal will see the Argentine join Saudi side Al-Hilal and face Cristiano Ronaldo
- TRANSFER NEWS LIVE: Follow all the latest updates on Lionel Messi’s next move
Lionel Messi’s sensational big-money move to Saudi Arabia from Paris Saint-Germain this summer is a ‘done deal’, according to reports in France.
Veteran Messi, 35, widely seen as the world’s best footballer, will sign a massive contract worth £522million at Saudi side Al-Hilal.
The move will see him reignite his rivalry with Cristiano Ronaldo, who plays for Al-Hilal’s rivals Al-Nassr in the Gulf state.
And according to AFP, a Saudi source close to the negotiations has confirmed on Tuesday morning that Messi will be playing in Saudi next season, labelling the transfer ‘huge’.
The source, speaking anonymously, added the move is now a ‘done deal’.
Forward Lionel Messi’s move to Saudi Arabia this summer is a ‘done deal’, according to reports
Argentine Messi has reportedly signed a massive £522million contract with Saudi side Al-Hilal
The Cup winner is already a tourism ambassador for the controversial Middle Eastern nation
PSG did not make a comment to AFP, other than restating that Messi’s contract lasts until June 30 this summer.
Mail Sport reported earlier on Tuesday that his wife Antonela ‘could not imagine’ moving their family, including their young children, to Saudi Arabia in a potential stumbling block to the move.
And Messi had reportedly been prepared to wait until the end of the season to make his decision after discussing his future with his family – but it now appears those concerns have been allayed, with Messi set to move to the Middle East.
French publication L’Equipe have reported that Antonela ‘can’t imagine’ their family moving to Saudi Arabia.
She is reportedly reluctant for the couple, along with their three young sons – Thiago, 10, Mateo, 7, and Ciro, 5 – to relocate to the Middle East and she would prefer to stay in Europe.
L’Equipe claim that the offer on the table for Messi is a two-year deal with the option of a third – which he would be 38-years-old by the end of.
Messi himself would still prefer to stay in Europe and it’s said that he is keeping an eye on the financial situation at former club Barcelona.
But reports on Tuesday indicated he had already agreed to sign for Al Hilal.
Messi, an ambassador for Saudi Arabia’s joint bid for the 2030 World Cup, is expected to leave PSG when his contract ends on June 30 and it appears his next destination will be Saudi Arabia.
Barcelona – where Messi played for most of his legendary career – must find around £175m to be able to register recruited players or players already on the books who they sign to new contract extensions.
Similar to Ronaldo, Saudi Arabia see Messi as a star of the game, and believe that the prospect of him moving to the country is a ‘unique opportunity which is impossible to pass up’.
It’s claimed that Riyadh has been preparing its strategy for months and has ‘left nothing to chance’.
Messi’s contract at PSG is set to expire at the end of the season and the 35-year-old looks certain to leave the club where he has struggled to build the same level of affinity as he did at Barcelona.
Talk of a move to Saudi Arabia heightened after he took an unauthorised trip to Saudi Arabia, where he holds a £25m-a-year tourism ambassadorial role.
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