Lionel Messi was in tears as he bade farewell to FC Barcelona – however stated he has not but selected his future.
“I am so grateful for the love individuals have proven me these years,” he instructed a information convention.
The striker, who broke down as he obtained a standing ovation, stated he tried to “behave with humility and respect, and I hope that is the reminiscence that shall be left of me”.
Messi, 34, has spent his total profession at Barcelona, coming via the membership’s academy earlier than happening to attain 672 targets in 778 appearances after making his senior debut in 2003.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner has formally been a free agent since 1 July after he did not agree phrases over a renewal earlier than his earlier Barcelona contract expired on 30 June.
The membership introduced Messi was set to go away as a brand new contract could not occur in keeping with monetary truthful play guidelines set by the Spanish league La Liga.
Messi has been linked to a transfer to PSG, however he stated he had not made up his thoughts about his future.
Though he stated PSG is “one risk” for the long run, he added he has nothing confirmed with anybody.
He stated: “There are a whole lot of golf equipment .”
The footballer admitted he was “satisfied” he was going to remain at Barcelona, including it is going to be “bizarre” for him to go away however individuals will get used to it.
Messi additionally known as his departure “probably the most troublesome” second of his profession.
He stated: “I have been right here my total life, I am not prepared for this. And final yr with all of the nonsense, I used to be satisfied of what I wished to say, however this yr it’s not the identical.
“This yr my household and I have been satisfied we have been going to remain right here, that’s what all of us wished greater than something.”
He stated his household was “at house” in Barcelona and “we thought we would be staying right here”.
“However at this time, I’ve to say goodbye to all of this,” he added.
He instructed the convention on the Nou Camp that he has “a lot respect” for the membership and “so many stunning issues” have occurred.
“Additionally some unhealthy issues, however all this helped me to develop and enhance and make me the individual I’m at this time,” he added.
The Argentine confirmed he agreed to take a 50% wage lower throughout negotiations over a brand new deal.
And he admitted it had been “troublesome” to not hear the followers in the course of the pandemic, saying he was now leaving with out seeing them for 18 months.
Messi stated: “I hope I can come again and be a part of this membership once more in any approach and assist it grow to be the most effective on the earth.”
Pressed on how Barcelona will cope with out him, he described the membership as “probably the greatest groups on the earth”.
He added: “Folks will get used to it, at first it is going to be bizarre however like every part, individuals will get used to it.
“They’ve nice gamers, an incredible squad and in the long run, it is going to be straightforward for them.”
He’ll journey to Paris on Sunday for medical exams with PSG later within the night or early on Monday, in line with the L’Equipe newspaper.
The newspaper reported they have been near an settlement, citing Argentine sources.