The actor’s father said in a statement that reports that Paris Saint-Germain star Lionel Messi has signed a deal to play in Saudi Arabia next season are unfounded.
Jorge Messi, who also represents his son, said: “There is absolutely nothing agreed with any club for next season. We will decide at the end of the season. Nothing is signed, accepted or verbally accepted. It’s just fake news using Leo’s name.”
Earlier, a Saudi source close to the negotiations told AFP that the deal was accepted on lucrative terms.
“The contract is extraordinary. It’s huge. We’re still in the process of finalizing some details,” the source said, without disclosing the name of the club involved.
Messi’s contract continues Saudi visitand often promotes the sights of the Kingdom.
The 35-year-old was recently suspended by his current club, Paris Saint-Germain, for visiting Saudi Arabia and missing the club’s practice.
Messi apologized to his teammates and the club following his suspension and is now back in training for the league leaders.
When contacted by journalists, PSG reported that Messi’s contract runs until 30 June.
According to Fabrizio Romano, Messi will respect the expiration of his contract as planned and will decide his future only at the end of the football season.
Recent reports have put Saudi club Al-Hilal ahead of the race to sign the World Champion with a bid of €400 million per year.
Messi’s transfer to Saudi Arabia will once again pit him against Cristiano Ronaldo after sharing a long-standing rivalry. The Portuguese attacker is currently with Al Nassr after arriving from Manchester United last December.
“Negotiations did not last as long as Ronaldo,” said the Saudi source, adding that as with the latter, the financial package came from the Saudi state wealth fund (PIF).