Argentine football legend Lionel Messi will join Major League Soccer club Inter Miami following his exit from Paris Saint Germain. After several links of a sensational return to his boyhood club, FC Barcelona, Messi will now head to the United States of America to ply his trade in the MLS at David Beckham's Miami-based franchise.
How Miami secured the big signing?
According to a report by The Athletic, Inter Miami had emerged as the victor in the competition to sign Messi, thanks to the support of their commercial partners Apple and adidas. It had been revealed that Messi will receive a portion of the revenue generated from Apple TV+'s MLS Season Pass, indicating collaboration between the player and the tech giant. Additionally, adidas has extended a profit-sharing agreement to Messi, aiming to further solidify their longstanding partnership.
Earlier this week, Messi's father acknowledged that his son had a preference for returning to Barcelona. However, due to the club's challenging financial situation, a final agreement became unattainable.
In recent months, players like Gerard Pique, Sergio Busquets, and Jordi Alba have departed from Barcelona, but the club still needs to make substantial reductions to their wage bill before they can register any new signings.
As for Al-Hilal, their hopes of acquiring Messi will have to be put on hold until at least 2024.
Messi, who was a free agent with his deal due to expire at the end of the month, confirmed his departure from the Ligue 1 champions last month.
Messi joined Barca's academy at the age of 13 and became their all-time record goalscorer with 672 goals.
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