Much has been said about Lionel Messi's future at FC Barcelona. While he is firmly stuck in place until the end of his contract next June, Portuguese legend Luis Figo thinks that it will be nearly impossible to keep the Argentine at the Camp Nou beyond the current season.
"Generally, in life, if you don't want to be somewhere, in the end there's nothing that can change your mind," said Figo, while talking to Marca about the Barcelona captain's situation. He believes that while Messi is keeping his head down on the pitch this season, his heart is no longer where it used to be.
It may be remembered that Messi had declared his desire to be transferred at the end of the previous season. Due to his massive release clause and a potentially lengthy legal battle that might ensue if he chooses to leave, Messi was forced to accept his fate and see through the end of his current contract.
Messi has not shown his usual magic this season, with Barcelona currently sitting in eighth place in La Liga. Youngster Ansu Fati has been the driving force in the attack, with Messi scoring only once from open play so far.
"I watched the thing with Messi and his attempt to leave Barcelona this summer like all football fans: expectantly and surprised," Figo said. "He'll have his motives and reasons for making that decision. I don't know what happened beforehand," he continued.
Figo also alluded to the crisis that Barcelona is currently facing. The club is under financial strain due largely to the novel coronavirus pandemic and the massive salaries of their current roster. Apart from that, a trophy-less season has led to the resignation of their entire board of directors. Figo thinks that the situation at the club s less than ideal for a big star like Messi to sit through.
"Every club wants to have a player like Messi, but then it depends on factors like the current financial situation at the club, the money he'll cost the club in wages, the will of the player," he said.
Before negotiations fell through, Premier League side Manchester City was believed to be interested in signing the Argentine.