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Messi reveals decision to join Beckham's Inter Miami
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Adam Drury
Lionel Messi has confirmed he is joining MLS side Inter Miami
Lionel Messi has confirmed he is joining MLS side Inter Miami

Lionel Messi has announced he is joining Inter Miami — ending months of speculation about his future.

The World Cup winner, 35, played his last game for Paris Saint-Germain earlier this month and looked set to return to Barcelona or secure a money-spinning switch to Saudi side Al-Hilal.

But he has opted to trade Ligue 1 for Major League Soccer after sealing a deal with Miami, who are co-owned by Manchester United legend David Beckham. 

In an interview with Spanish publications Mundo Deportivo and Sport, the Argentina superstar said: "I made the decision that I am going to go to Miami.

"I still haven't closed it 100%. I'm missing some things but we decided to continue on the path.

"If the Barcelona thing didn't work out, I wanted to leave Europe, get out of the spotlight and think more of my family.

"I was very excited to be able to return [to Barcelona]. But after the exit I had, I did not want to be in the same situation again — waiting to see what was going to happen. 

"I heard they had to sell players or lower salaries and the truth is I didn't want to go through that."

Messi's decision will raise eyebrows across the world. 

Miami recently sacked boss Phil Neville — a former team-mate of Beckham's — and sit bottom of the 15-team Eastern Conference. 

But Messi is relishing the challenge. He added: "I also wanted to look for something else and a bit of peace of mind.

"I had offers from other European teams but I didn't even evaluate them because my idea was to go to Barcelona.

Lionel Messi's Paris Saint-Germain deal expires on June 30
Lionel Messi's Paris Saint-Germain deal expires on June 30

"[I am] going to live in the United States and enjoy day-to-day [life] much more but with the same responsibility of wanting to win and always doing things well."

Messi scored 672 goals in 778 appearances during a legendary stint at the Camp Nou.

His impact lessened after joining PSG in 2021 but 32 goals in 75 appearances still represents a fine return.

And inspiring Argentina to World Cup glory in Qatar last winter was the cherry on the cake.


Paris Saint-GermainLionel MessiMajor League SoccerInter Miami CFBarcelona
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