Friday, December 3, 2021

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Up in the air! Lionel Messi’s Barcelona contract ends

Argentine forward Lionel Messi has finally become a free agent after his contract with Barcelona expired on June 30.

Spanish giants Barcelona was hopeful of renewing Messi’s contract before the June 30 deadline, however, it has not been yet and as a result, the 34-year-old is now officially a free agent.

Messi had expressed his desire to leave the club at the end of the 2019-20 season. But after the refusal of the club and a looming legal battle, Barcelona was able to keep the mercurial no 10 for one more season.

And now, the moment every Barca fan dreaded has arrived as Messi finally becomes a free agent, potentially bringing an end his 20-year-stay at the club.

The six-time ballon d’Or winner is currently with the Argentina squad for the ongoing Copa America where they play Ecuador in the quarterfinals of the tournament on Sunday, July 4.

Messi, 34, scored two goals and set up another as Argentina defeated Bolivia 4-1 to finish at the top of Group A with 10 points from four games.

As he stepped onto the field to play against Bolivia, Messi broke Argentina`s record for most national team caps with his 148th appearance to eclipse Javier Mascherano’s tally of 147.

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