Lionel Messi to depart from PSG after Saturday's match against Clermont. The football legend's future plans after two fruitful seasons are yet unknown
After two successful seasons, Lionel Messi, Argentina forward and one of the most celebrated players in the history of football, is set to play his final match for Paris St-Germain (PSG) against Clermont on Saturday.
Christophe Galtier, PSG's manager, confirmed in a statement on Thursday that the 35-year-old's contract will expire this summer.
Messi's arrival at PSG in July 2021, following a free transfer from his long-time club Barcelona, marked a new chapter in his illustrious career.
Since then, he has contributed significantly to PSG's triumphs, including two back-to-back Ligue 1 titles.
Galtier, reflecting on Messi's tenure at PSG, said, "I had the privilege of coaching the best player in the history of football. This will be his last match at the Parc des Princes, and I hope that he will receive the warmest of welcomes."
The past month has seen increased security at the homes of Messi and his fellow teammates Neymar and Marco Verratti following fan protests.
This occurred after a defeat by Lorient and Messi's two-week suspension for travelling to Saudi Arabia without PSG's approval, an incident for which Messi later apologised to his teammates.
Messi's performance in the 2022 World Cup, leading Argentina to victory as captain, seemingly solidified his future at PSG.
Initial talks were held to extend his stay by a year, but plans changed.
Despite the ups and downs, Messi's contributions to PSG have been impressive, with 21 goals and 20 assists in all competitions this season and a total of 32 goals in 74 matches for the club.
Nevertheless, PSG's performance in the Champions League has been disappointing, with the team exiting at the last-16 stage in the past two seasons.
As Messi prepares to say goodbye to PSG, speculation about his future is rife. Spanish football writer Guillem Balague stated that Lionel Messi will make a decision soon but ruled out a return to Barcelona, the club where he spent 21 years.
While his future club remains uncertain, there is no denying Lionel Messi's undeniable talent and impact on the field.
As football fans prepare to watch his final match for PSG, the world will be watching to see where the next chapter of Messi's extraordinary career takes him.