Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal has reportedly agreed to cough up $500 million in their attempt to sign Lionel Messi. With just a few weeks until the season ends, Messi‘s transfer situation is causing a stir in the soccer world. While some are waiting for Messi to join Cristiano Ronaldo in Saudi Arabia, others don’t want Messi to get “tricked” like Ronaldo.
Cristiano Ronaldo joined Al-Nassr early this year for a blockbuster $200 million per year deal. However, almost half a year into his new life in Saudi Arabia, Ronaldo reportedly wants to leave. Earlier this month, Brazilian legend and former FC Barcelona star Rivaldo talked about Ronaldo’s move to Saudi Arabia. Rivaldo said, “I understand that sometimes the players are tricked by the big contract they sign in Saudi Arabia.“
(🌕) “Al-Hilal is offering Messi the biggest contract in sport history, they insist, but Messi hasn’t given any answer yet as his priority is European football and FC Barcelona. The Catalan club are working on his return and for the first time in a long time Javier Tebas is… pic.twitter.com/Osnv5EGDoX
— All About Argentina 🛎🇦🇷 (@AlbicelesteTalk) May 12, 2023
Meanwhile, Lionel Messi is yet to accept Al-Hilal’s offer despite it being on the table for many weeks now. The Saudi Arabian club initially offered Messi a $439 million per year contract. However, unable to sway the PSG star’s decision, Al-Hilal has now raised their bid to more than $500 million per year, according to Forbes. If Messi chooses to accept the offer, he will become the world’s highest-paid athlete by a distance.
Lionel Messi will reportedly reject Al-Hilal’s $500 million offer for FC Barcelona
While Lionel Messi is yet to respond to Al-Hilal’s mouth-watering deal, Catalan businessman Jaume Roures believes that Messi will return to FC Barcelona. Speaking to Cadena SER, Roures stated that Messi may reject Al-Hilal’s offer after seeing how Ronaldo’s Al-Nassr move turned out. He said, “I think he (Messi) may come back, even though the Saudis have raised the ante to more than 500 million for a year.“
“The experience in Paris has not been satisfying, and everyone has seen how Cristiano is doing in Saudi Arabia and how badly he is going through it. Leo has always said that he wanted to return to Barcelona and this is a factor that weighs [heavily].” Jaume Roures, who is the owner of Mediapro, has been an important figure in FC Barcelona’s recent history.
Following FC Barcelona’s financial debacle a couple of years ago, Roures became the club’s savior. In the aftermath of Barca president Joan Laporta’s decision to activate the club’s economic levers, Roures’ purchased 24.5% of Barca Studios for $108 million, which was the fourth economic lever. Moreover, Laporta got help from Roures while he was running for election in 2021 to become Barca president.
🎙️🚨| Eduard Romeu (Economic VP), about the feasibility plan: “It is very conservative and rigorous. We have it complete for 2 years and I’m sure it’ll be approved. On 19 May, LaLiga delegate commission meets and we will have an answer that I’m sure will be positive.” #fcblive pic.twitter.com/OwZNmMy3K0
— BarçaTimes (@BarcaTimes) May 11, 2023
It has also been reported that the economic feasibility plan that Barca presented to La Liga has been approved. The club will require the league’s approval for their feasibility plan to sign Messi. However, the sources have also confirmed that the club’s absolute priority would be the registration of first-team players like Gavi and the renewal of the contracts of players like Ronald Araujo and Alejandro Balde.