Update: Messi himself has posted a video saying he will play for Inter Miami. The superstar is officially on his way to MLS.
Seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi has reportedly settled on a landing spot and is headed to Major League Soccer’s Inter Miami, per Guillem Balague. Messi spent nearly 20 years of his career at FC Barcelona before heading to Paris Saint-Germain over the last two years.
Messi has decided. His destination: Inter Miami— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) June 7, 2023
Leo Messi se va al Inter Miami
Messi reportedly turned down a lucrative offer from Saudi Arabia’s Al-Hilal club after being in talks with them as recently as this week. Miami will offer Messi some familiar faces — Xavier Asensi, Miami’s chief business officer, was formerly Barcelona’s chief commercial officer. Former Argentina national team coach Gerardo “Tata” Martino has reportedly also been in talks with Inter Miami to fill their vacancy in the head coaching position.
Per The Athletic, Messi had narrowed down his choices to Barcelona and Inter Miami. No contract has been signed yet, but discussions have included a profit-sharing option for Messi with Apple TV+’s MLS Season Pass. Adidas, the sole MLS sponsor, has also tossed out profit-sharing options for Messi.
There have also been rumors that Messi will be given an ownership stake in Inter Miami, as well as what is by far the largest deal since David Beckham signed with the league and was granted the right to own a franchise later.
That franchise eventually became Inter Miami. Messi has also been a brand representative for Hard Rock restaurants and casinos, based in Florida and owned by the Seminole Tribe of Florida, since 2021.