In Brief

Lionel Messi to Inter Miami? David Beckham ‘reaches out’ to Barcelona superstar

Beckham wants a marquee signing at new MLS club but Barca plan to offer their captain a lifetime deal

David Beckham has reportedly approached Lionel Messi about making a sensational move to Major League Soccer (MLS).

Beckham’s Inter Miami will join the MLS in 2020 and the former England captain, president of the Florida franchise, is keen to make Messi the club’s marquee signing. 

Radio Catalunya in Barcelona claims that Beckham has reached out to Messi’s representatives and ESPN says that the station’s presenter Xavi Campos believes a “huge” deal could interest the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.

The Miami Herald reports that the new MLS team are not commenting on the latest rumours, but Beckham has previously spoken about his wish-list of players, such as Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. 

In March former Manchester United midfielder Beckham said: “Everyone has their wish list, everyone does, but if you look at the way Leo and Cristiano are still playing, even at what you might think is the later stage of their careers, I don’t see it ending for them. 

“They’re playing at such a high level that it’s hard to see them leaving the clubs they are at, but we will see. You never know what can happen in football.”

Could Messi ever leave Barca?

It was widely reported this week that despite Messi having a contract until 2021 the 32-year-old would be free to leave Barcelona at the end of the season. 

However, the Catalan giants obviously don’t want to lose their captain and star player. Messi has only ever played senior club football for Barca and has scored 603 goals in 687 appearances

Spanish newspaper AS, citing information published by Catalan outlet Mundo Deportivo, says Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu has hit back at claims that Messi could depart at the end of the 2019-20 season.

On Sunday Mundo Deportivo said that Barca are in fact planning to offer Messi a “lifetime contract”. 

Camp Nou chief Bartomeu told Barca TV: “He signed until 2021. And it was agreed that, when the penultimate season finished, he would have the power to leave for free. He has the liberty to decide his future. But he is very ‘culé’ and I’m relaxed.

“Xavi, [Andres] Iniesta and [Carles] Puyol had the same clause. To Messi, the best player of all time, we couldn’t give him a different clause. 

“But I repeat: I have no doubt he will stay here for many years. He will be here as long as he is able to perform for Barcelona. Let’s hope we have him until he is 40 years old.”

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