Barcelona have confirmed that Lionel Messi will not be signing a new deal at the club due to their ongoing financial concerns.
The Argentine superstar has been in talks with Barça for the majority of the summer, with the club hoping to tie him down to a new deal that would keep him at Camp Nou for the remainder of his career.
Despite Messi currently being a free agent after his deal with the La Liga giants expired earlier this summer, Joan Laporta has continued to insist that an agreement would be reached and even went as far as to suggest an announcement could be made in the next few days.
However, reports coming out of Spain on Thursday night suggested that talks had hit the buffers after club chiefs were unable to reach a compromise with Messi’s representatives, and just a few hours later Barcelona confirmed the news their legions of fans will have been dreading.
The club took to their official website to reveal that, despite Messi having agreed terms over a new deal, the club’s ongoing financial restraints have meant they would be unable to commit to the proposed offer and as such their captain and talisman will now be on the hunt for a new club.
“Despite having reached an agreement between FC Barcelona and Leo Messi and with the clear intention of both parties to sign a new contract today, it cannot be formalized due to economic and structural obstacles [Spanish La Liga regulations],” the statement read.
“Given this situation, Lionel Messi will not continue linked to FC Barcelona. Both parties deeply regret that the wishes of both the player and the club cannot finally be fulfilled.
“Barça would like to thank with all its heart the player's contribution to the enhancement of the institution and wishes him the best in his personal and professional life.”