Lionel Messi is set to depart Barcelona after 21 long years this summer.
The Argentine superstar – largely believed to be the greatest player to ever play the game – dropped a transfer bombshell last week when it was reported he would not be signing a new contract with the Catalan giants.
The world of football has been shocked since that news, with speculation rife over his future. French side Paris Saint-Germain are favourites for his signature, although Chelsea have also been linked, with Roman Abramovich reportedly wanting a meeting about trying to convince a transfer.
Messi, who has won the Ballon d’Or a record six times, addressed the media and public at a press conference at the Nou Camp on Sunday morning, where he was visibly emotional about having to reveal he would be leaving the club he loves so much.
“This is really difficult for me after so many years, being here my entire life,” he said.
“I am not ready for this.
“After 21 years, I am leaving with my wife, with my three little Catalan/Argentine kids. I can’t tell you everything that we’ve lived in this city.”
On the confusion surrounding his contract, Messi added: “This is what Laporta said, right up until the last minute. But because of the league, this could not happen. There is nothing more to tell.”
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Messi also addressed his future amid those links with PSG and Chelsea – and he confirmed interest from the French giants, among others.
“That’s honestly one possibility [PSG], to reach those heights,” he said. “At the minute, I’ve got nothing agreed with anybody.
“When the press release was released, I got a lot of calls from many clubs interested. At the minute I have not got anything closed, but we are talking about a lot of things.”