Paris Saint-Germain playmaker Lionel Messi has confirmed his decision on retirement and also revealed his next step after football.
Recall that Lionel Messi hinted that the 2022 World Cup will be his last World Cup as he hopes to galvanize Argentina to another major trophy after the 2021 Copa America glory in Brazil.
However, in an interview with Direct Sports TV, Lionel Messi seemed to reverse his stand on imminent retirement from international football.
He hinted at a potential exit from international football after the 2022 World Cup due to the ‘logical issues of age’ but added he can continue if he is still upbeat with his fitness after the tournament.
Although he gave a hint about his retirement from international football, Messi did not specifically address his retirement from football generally.
He currently has a two-year contract with PSG that will expire in June next year. Speaking with Ezequiel Lavezzi, via Connell Edgar-Jones of Barca Universal, the 35-year-old laid to rest speculations on when he will finally retire from football.
Although he did not state the exact date, Messi hinted that his retirement from football is imminent.
“I don’t think I will play for much longer,” he said.
After an abysmal first season with PSG in French Ligue 1, Messi is currently on an outstanding form with PSG. He has scored seven goals with 10 assists in 13 league matches, adding four goals with four assists in Champions League action.
PSG currently sits on top of the Ligue 1 and have qualified for the Round of 16 in the Champions League.
The World Cup will also provide a chance to add to his trophy case after helping Argentina win the Copa América last season. The team was a runner-up at the 2014 World Cup and it’s a top contender to take home the title in Qatar.
Despite the recent success, Messi’s future remains in doubt, with his PSG contract up at the end of the season.
However, there have been reports that PSG is keen on renewing his contract for an additional two years, but contract renewal talks have been stalled due to the World Cup.
Meanwhile, reports have also linked the 35-year-old to a potential move to MLS, with Inter Miami having increasing confidence of completing a deal with the Argentine playmaker.
Barcelona is also interested in signing back their legendary attacking midfielder, with Barca President hopeful of brokering a deal through any possible means.
Despite the opportunities, Lionel Messi still has his eyes set on retirement. However, he has admitted his unyielding love and passion for the game and stated he will still be close to the game after retirement.
“I love football and have strong passion for it. Even after retirement, I will still try to do something close to it,” Messi said.
Messi will be playing in his fifth and probably final World Cup for Argentina, which kicks off a few days from now. Argentina is among the top favorites in the tournament, and Messi will be hoping to wrap off his epic career with a FIFA World Cup trophy.