The Argentine superstar is linked with a departure from Catalonia after a dismal season resulted in no silverware – and one thing is crucial to where he decides his future lies
Lionel Messi is not motivated by money and will only leave Barcelona for a team where he believes he can win the Champions League, according to a Spanish football expert.
The 33-year-old has been linked with an exit from the Nou Camp after a dire season saw the Catalan giants fail to win a trophy for the first time since the 2007/08 campaign.
A humbling 8-2 defeat in the Champions League to Bayern Munich last week led to manager Quique Setien’s sacking and
Ronald Koeman is set to take over
in the hot seat.
Messi’s future is less certain and he faces a “complicated equation” as he weighs up his next move, according to La Liga in-the-know Graham Hunter.
The Argentine is not motivated by a bumper contract away from Barcelona but is intent being with a club where he can win a fifth Champions League.
“If he is motivated and fit there is every reason to argue he could be exceptional for another three or four years, he just turned 33 in June,” Hunter told Sky Sports .
“This board, for as long as they stay in power, and I think that will be until at least March, will not want to be tainted by being the ones that let Messi escape, as well as being tainted for being known as the board which failed to bring the best out of the final golden years of Messi.
“Clubs who want him are suddenly going to be asked for €100million for a 33-year-old, and it’s possible there might be one or two willing to pay that, but he then has to look around and say if I’m disrupting my life and taking my family out of a place where I’ve always said I wanted to stay, will he be joining a winning franchise.
“He doesn’t want to leave for more money or just to be out of the mess that is going on around him, he wants to win the Champions League. It’s a very complicated equation to work out how he leaves, or to where he might go.
“Of course, he is waiting to see the developments [regarding the board and manager] and whether he believes that might make a difference to him staying and winning at Barcelona.”