Lionel Messi chose Major League Soccer over a lucrative deal

Lionel Messi chose MLS over a lucrative €1.4 billion offer

Lionel Messi passed on a jaw-breaking Saudi Arabia deal to join Inter Miami instead.

After a two-year tenure at Paris Saint-Germain, Lionel Messi opted for a new challenge and on June 2023, one of the greatest players of all time decided to move West.

However, bagging 21 goals and 20 assists in his final season was not taken well by the fans as they turned on the Argentinian winger. This led head coach Christophe Galtier to announce that the club would not extend Messi’s contract further.

Rumors waited for no one, and immediately words began to circulate that the World Cup winner would join his long-term adversary Cristiano Ronaldo at the Saudi Pro League.

Instead, Messi grabbed the headlines by signing a two-year contract with Major League Soccer club Inter Miami, owned by David Beckham.

But, according to sources, there was an official offer to Messi to join the Saudi league which was priced at a staggering €1.4 billion.

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The What if scenario

President Anmar Al Haili of Saudi Pro League club Al Hilal shared details of the deal, saying:

We actually contacted Messi when his contract in Paris ended. We presented him with an offer of 1.4 billion euros, but the player refused because his family wanted America.

It was a surprise how the player could refuse such a huge offer for the sake of his family. It was possible to convince his family, but he did not hesitate to refuse. We respect this, as family is more important than money

If Messi had given Al Hilal’s proposal a thumbs up, he would have been reunited again with former Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain teammate Neymar Jr.

That amazing attacking trio would be completed by former Premier League striker Aleksandar Mitrović, who left Fulham in the 2022/23 season for Saudi Arabia.

Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez playing for Inter Miami (Credits: The Independent)

Moreover, Messi re-joined with a few of his former teammates including Luis Suárez, Jordi Alba, and Sergio Busquets, with whom he played during his 14 years in Catalonia.

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