Lionel Messi sent shockwaves through the sporting world when it was revealed in the summer of 2021 that he would be severing career-long ties with Barcelona. Having forged and cemented a reputation as one of soccer’s all-time greats while representing La Liga heavyweights, the expectation was that an iconic figure would see out his playing days at Camp Nou.
The unimaginable happened, though, when the well ran dry in Catalunya and Barca were forced to bid an emotional farewell to an Argentine legend that had been adopted as one of their own. There were tears, and immediate talk of steps being retraced at some stage, but all parties quickly moved on as individual and collective targets were realigned.
Messi’s star continues to shine as brightly as ever in the present, with the classy playmaker determined to complete an enviable medal collection before the day comes to hang up his boots. Global glory had proved elusive heading into 2022, but betting tips for World Cup outright markets suggest that the long wait for the biggest prize in international soccer may be coming to a close.
Lionel Messi has a date with destiny 🏆 pic.twitter.com/5n3T2rdLvv— GOAL (@goal) December 13, 2022
Argentina always knew that their talismanic captain would need to deliver for them in Qatar for more major honors to fall within reach, and one of the best to ever do it was never going to buckle under that weight of expectation.
Messi is, and always will be, a hero to millions in every corner of the planet, with his tale of how dreams really can come true. His value to Argentina’s cause can never be underestimated, while it has always been difficult to put a figure on how much he is worth to any given domestic employer.
He has never been involved in a transfer that saw money change hands, so no price tag has ever been placed around his neck. It is, however, safe to assume that records would have been smashed had he been made available on the open market.
Instead, Messi’s worth at club level is judged on the size of contracts handed out to him. Record-setting deals were signed during his time at Barcelona, while Paris Saint-Germain dug into the deepest of pockets when learning that a seven-time Ballon d’Or winner could be plucked out of a free agent pool.
What is that agreement worth? Well, a South American superstar in the French capital was said to have penned terms that netted him $33 million across his debut season at Parc des Princes. That figure rose to $44m in his second campaign, with Messi pulling in $3.3m a month – that’s $833,000 per week or $27,778 every day.
PSG are happy to be paying that as the going rate and remain keen on discussing an extension to a deal that is due to expire in 2023. Club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi has said: “We agreed together that after the World Cup, sit down together. But both sides – our side of the club and him – are very happy, so we will talk after the World Cup.”
Lionel Messi plays his 1,000th game today.— B/R Football (@brfootball) December 3, 2022
What a career. pic.twitter.com/FEMPjGiK0q
There is a chance that Messi will return to France as a world champion, with his ultimate goal being hit, and that should serve to add a few more dollars to his demands when discussions are held regarding another lucrative contract for the most valuable of sporting assets.