Lionel Messi will become a free agent on Thursday, but Barcelona still hope to agree a new contract with the Argentine, according to ESPN’s Sam Marsden and Moises Llorens.
Messi’s contract expires on Wednesday, and he has yet to sign a renewal to extend his stay in Barcelona. However, ESPN reports that there is a “flexible agreement” and Barça is “pressing” with the final details, with the aim of announcing the agreement as soon as possible.
Messi’s last contract with the club was worth more than 500 million euros over four years, but Barcelona cannot afford a similar deal this time, as they have a debt of more than 1 billion euros.
ESPN reported earlier this year that Messi’s new deal could be a two-year deal with the option of a third year. The club also wants to give you the option to finish your career in Major League Soccer.
Messi applied for a transfer from Barcelona last summer, but has become more open to staying at the club over the last year. The resignation of former president Josep Maria Bartomeu has been an important factor, adds ESPN.
Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain heavily pursued the 34-year-old over the past year. However, Barcelona was not willing to transfer it for less than 700 million euros.