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Lionel Messi camp denies agreement to play in Saudi Arabia next season giving Barcelona hope in transfer pursuit

Jorge Messi, father and agent of Lionel, has denied reports of the Paris Saint-Germain player agreeing a deal to play in Saudi Arabia next season.

Reports broke earlier today that Messi had agreed a blockbuster deal to move to the Gulf nation. Saudi Pro League club Al Hilal have been pushing to sign him for a while now.

However, Messi snr has denied any agreement is in place and said they would only consider transfers when the season ends.

In a post on Instagram, Messi said (via L’Equipe): “There is absolutely nothing with any club for next year. The decision will never be made before Lionel finished the league with PSG.

“Once the season is over it will be time to analyse and see what is there, and then make a decision.

“There are always rumors and many use the name of Lionel to gain notoriety but the truth is only one and we can assure that there is nothing with anyone. 

“Neither verbal, nor signed, nor agreed, and there will not be until the end of the season.

“It seems to me a lack of respect towards the media where they respond, that there are those who consciously and deliberately deceive, without providing any proof of their claims, and wanting to turn any malicious rumour into news or that is directed by someone in favour of their interests. 

“They would have to explain why they don’t contrast the information – they don’t want a truth to ruin their ‘news’.”

Messi’s statement will give Barcelona hope in their pursuit of the Argentine international. They are trying to bring the 2022 World Cup winner back to Spotify Camp Nou.

However, La Liga will not let the Catalans sign and register players for the new season if they don’t meet some financial obligations.

Barcelona must further reduce salaries and sell some of their stars to meet the conditions set by La Liga.

Messi would have to take a massive pay cut to get a deal across the line.

He returned to training today following his suspension for visiting Saudi Arabia without PSG’s permission.

The 35-year-old apologised and started training individually yesterday. Messi joined full first-team training today.

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