Ligue 1 Set to Make One Rule Change Ahead of PSG's Imminent Lionel Messi Signing

By Amreen
Ligue 1 to make rule change for Lionel Messi
Ligue 1 to make rule change for Lionel Messi / Gustavo Pagano/Getty Images

Ligue 1 are set to make one rule change ahead of Paris Saint-Germain's imminent Lionel Messi signing.

Barcelona officially announced last week that Messi would be leaving Camp Nou after 21 years, and the rumour mill has claimed that the six-time Ballon d'Or winner looks set to join PSG on an initial two-year contract and will reportedly earn €25m-a-year.

Marca have claimed that PSG have offered Messi the No 30 shirt which is "likely to be chosen" by the Argentine ahead of the new season. According to Ligue 1's guidelines, the No 30 shirt needs to be reserved for goalkeepers, but the French league are willing to put aside the ruling for one of the greatest players in history.

Gianluigi Donnarumma, who also joined on a free transfer this summer, took the No 50 shirt because he was not allowed to wear the No 99 he sported for Milan.

"The numbers 1, 16 and 30 are exclusively and necessarily reserved for goalkeepers," the LFP rule #670 states. "Ultimately, the number 40 can be assigned. All teams must have a jersey with number 33 that is not assigned to a player and reserved for breaking replacements. A directory is established early in the season and available to referees and delegates by the LFP."

Fans urged Barcelona to retire Messi's iconic No 10 shirt, but club legend Ronald de Boer believes the number should be given to a youngster who "aspires to be like Messi".

Speaking to talkSPORT, De Boer said: "We had it with Johan Cruyff No 14 [at Ajax], of course. In another way, no, you have to always dream to be just as good as Messi. I think the No 10 must stay alive, not to say okay we'll put it some place and nobody's going to touch it.

"I mean, Messi's Messi. [...] If I think about Messi, it's about his football skills, so not his shirt. Try to give it to a youngster who wants to be just as good as Messi."