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Xavi: 'Lionel Messi will make a decision on his future next week'

Xavi: 'Lionel Messi will make a decision on his future next week'
© Reuters
Barcelona head coach Xavi claims that Lionel Messi, who is leaving Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer, will make a decision on his future "next week".

Barcelona head coach Xavi has claimed that Lionel Messi will make a decision "next week" when it comes to his future.

The Argentina international's departure from Paris Saint-Germain was confirmed by the French club's head coach Christophe Galtier during a press conference on Thursday.

Messi will therefore be available on a free transfer this summer, and there remains widespread speculation surrounding his future.

The 35-year-old is thought to be keen to spend another season in European football, but he is believed to have offers from MLS outfit Inter Miami and Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal.

Barcelona continue to be linked with their former player, but it was recently claimed that the Catalan outfit have not yet placed an offer on the table.

Paris Saint-Germain attacker Lionel Messi warms up on May 27, 2023© Reuters

Xavi recently confirmed that he wants Messi, who is also being linked with a switch to the Premier League, to return to Camp Nou this summer.

However, Barcelona's financial problems could make it difficult for them to re-sign the World Cup winner due to the enormous wages that he will command.

Xavi has said that a decision from Messi on his future will arrive "next week".

"Next week he will make a decision. In the end, if we talk about Leo every day, every day, I don't think he adds up either," the Barcelona head coach told Mundo Deportivo.

"I know that Leo is going to help us if he decides to come, but in the end, I think we have to leave him a little alone. As for the soccer issue, it depends on him. For me there are no doubts. If Leo decides to come, he has the doors open.

Argentina's Lionel Messi kisses the World Cup trophy after collecting the Golden Ball award on December 18, 2022© Reuters

"Messi can adapt to many positions. He can play as a winger, he can play as an interior, he can play as a false nine. I think we lack some talent in the final third and Leo always gives it to you.

"Leo is also a natural leader, he would adapt perfectly to the circumstances, he has been captain of this club, he has been the best player in history and obviously of this club."

Xavi was also asked about Bernardo Silva, with the Portugal international again being linked with a move to Camp Nou, but the Barcelona boss admitted that it would be "very difficult" to sign him from Manchester City.

"Bernardo Silva as an alternative? No, well, this would be clear, that would be wonderful, but he's also a City player, very difficult," he added when questioned on the attacker.

Barcelona view signing a replacement for the outgoing Sergio Busquets as their main priority for the summer market, and Xavi has revealed that Bayern Munich's Joshua Kimmich is of interest to the club.

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