FC Barcelona on Thursday issued a statement afterLionel Messi —one of the greatest football players of all time — announced to join Major League Soccer (MLS) team Inter Miami.
Messi's announcement came after his departure fromParis Saint-Germain (PSG), where he spent the last two seasons after leaving Barcelona in 2021.
Following his decision toembark on a new adventure in the United States, the Catalans wished the Argentian the best of luck in his new professional phase.
“On Monday, June 5, Jorge Messi, the player’s father and representative, informed Club President Joan Laporta of the player's decision to join Inter Miami, despite having been presented with a proposal from Barca, in consideration of the desire of both FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi for him to once again wear Blaugrana,” the Spain-based club said.
“President Laporta understood and respected Messi's decision to want to compete in a league with fewer demands, further away from the spotlight and the pressure he has been subject to in recent years.
“Both Joan Laporta and Jorge Messi also agreed to work together to promote a proper tribute from Barca fans to honour a footballer who has been, is, and always will be loved by Barca.”
Meanwhile, Messi admitted that he wanted to return to Barcelona since he loves the club which helped him rise to fame between 2004 and 2021.
"I really wanted to return, I was very excited to be able to return, but, on the other hand, after having experienced what I experienced when I left, I didn't want to be in the same situation again. I didn't want to leave my future in someone else's hands,” Messi told Spanish media on Wednesday.
"Although I heard that it was said that La Liga had accepted everything and that everything was fine for me to return, there were still many other things that had to happen.
"I wanted to make my own decision and that's why I didn't return to Barca. Although I would have loved it, it couldn't be.
"Hopefully one day I can contribute something to the club and help because Barca is a club that I love as I always said."
It must be noted that Messi left French side Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the current season.