Lionel Messi - FC Barcelona - wheels away

TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Report

It’s time for the latest installment of the popular Lionel Messi to MLS rumor mill.

A report out of Spain details the proposed Barcelona contract for Messi, which would include two more seasons on the field for the Catalan giants, two seasons with Inter Miami CF and six additional years in a yet to be defined off field role.

Catalan-based daily SPORT reports Barcelona and Messi have agreed on the length of the contract, reportedly a 10-year deal is for $293 million, as well as his compensation as a player. What needs to be worked out is what the Argentine attacker will be paid in his post-playing career.

“Lionel Messi’s renewal is going well,” Barcelona president Joan Laporta said on Friday. “It’s not done, but it's going well.”

Given the David Beckham factor, Miami as one of the more desirable landing spots for a global icon and Inter Miami's willingness to splash cash on big names, there's certainly reason to give such a rumor credence.

Here’s where there’s reason to be skeptical, though. The report indicates Messi would be paid $73 million per year as an Inter Miami player. In comparison, Zlatan Ibrahimovic received an annual base salary of $7.2 million in his final season with the LA Galaxy and was the highest paid player in MLS in 2019.

Messi, who has publicly expressed interest in playing in MLS “someday,” was also linked to a possible move to New York City FC in a similarly structured deal that would have saw Messi reunited with Pep Guardiola at Manchester City first.

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