Inter Milan joins the race to sign PSG star Lionel Messi

Italian giant Inter Milan has joined the race to sign World Cup winner Lionel Messi from Paris Saint-Germain during the summer transfer window on a free transfer.

The Argentinian legend’s contract with PSG expires at the end of the season, and he has the option to extend his stay by another year, but it appears unlikely that he will do so.

Argentine journalist Sergio A. Gonzalez believes Inter’s Vice-President Javier Zanetti could be instrumental in making this happen. Gonzalez posted on social media that “Inter intend to sign Leo. Zanetti would be a factor. Contract extension talks are deadlocked in Paris, Barca is restricted by FFP and seemingly on the River Thebes – Will Pupi [Zanetti] manage to get him?”

Also read: Watch: Lionel Messi mobbed by fans during restaurant visit in Argentina

Inter may use the relationship that Zanetti, who played alongside Messi for the Argentina national team, has with the World Cup winner to persuade him to join the Serie A side.

However, Barcelona would also like to have the 35-year-old return to the Nou Camp, where he played for 21 years of his career. Barca, however, is having persistent financial problems and might not be able to sign Messi until they straighten out their books. The fact that the Catalan powerhouses are essentially subject to a transfer ban by LaLiga may force them to sell a number of players.

Retired striker and Messi’s best friend, Sergio Aguero, remains hopeful that the Argentina captain will return to Spain to finish his career there. Aguero said, “My feeling is that there is a 50 per cent chance that Leo Messi will return. I think that Leo should retire at Barca. Barcelona is his home, he has to finish his career here.”

Aside from Inter and Barcelona, Messi has also been linked with a move to Major League Soccer side Inter Miami and Saudi Arabian club Al Hilal in the Saudi Pro League.

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