Lionel Messi unlikely to join Paris Saint-Germain, FFP a factor

For years, there has been talked around the way that Paris Saint-Germain plays to the rules of European football. Under the UEFA Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations, teams have to manage their spending accordingly. Thanks to the way that PSG is run, though, some believe they do some pretty spectacular work in dodging the regulations and working around them. However, it looks like those fears are often unfounded – if they weren’t, would they really allow FFP to get in the way of signing Lionel Messi?

It looks almost certain that the Argentine will be on the market this summer, as his time in Barcelona comes to an end. Available on a free transfer, various clubs are keen to make a signing that would be among the biggest statements of all-time. Being the club that convinces Messi to ditch the Barcelona project would be a huge boon for any club’s reputation. However, for PSG, it looks like the financial reality is going to get in the way of their ability to do just that.

Reports from France suggest that a mixture of FFP realities and the collapsing French TV deals make Messi appearing in Ligue 1 highly unlikely. Therefore, it is likely that he will move on to another team – Manchester City are quietly seen as the favourite – with PSG unable to extend their funding to make him fit into the side. Given the Parisians are in the process of trying to negotiate new deals with current star turns Kylian Mbappe and Neymar Jr, it might be hard to make space for Messi, as well.

Where will Lionel Messi arrive in summer 2021?

At the moment, the only person who will have any idea is Messi himself. Just about every major club in the world has made clear they would try and do the deal that Messi wants. However, given his astronomical earning power paired up with his incredible wage demands and his age, it’s hard to see many teams being able to actually stretch.

Just as there are often rumours of clubs like Real Madrid completing world record deals for players like Mbappe, the financial reality – especially during the COVID-19 era – says otherwise. Staying at Barcelona looks highly uncertain, but for Messi, it might be hard to find the deal he wants at the club of his choosing. Might he have to either compromise with his current club or one of his suitors?

A few years ago, almost any club at the top table of European football would be focusing on making Messi a priority signing. Now, though, with his age, his needs, and his required income, it might be hard for any club to realistically splash out to bring him to their stadium.

As such, despite his desire to leave and the likelihood that he will move on from Barcelona in the summer, there really is no set-in-stone destination for Messi to arrive at. Paris, though, appears to be off the table thanks to the reality of their financial situation. 

15.02.2021 < Back