20221227 lionel messi
Lionel Messi could be heading to Saudi Arabia in a big money deal. Image Credit: Reuters

Dubai: Lionel Messi is being offered a staggering £194 million per year deal to move to Saudi Arabia.

The Argentine footballer, who is currently 35 years old, will become a free agent in the summer if he does not agree to a contract extension with Paris Saint-Germain.

While PSG is still keen to secure a deal with Messi, Saudi chiefs are hoping to lure the Barcelona legend to the Middle East with a similar offer to the one Cristiano Ronaldo accepted when he joined Al Nassr in December.

Earlier this week, Messi’s father, Jorge, was spotted in Riyadh meeting with Professor Abdullah Hammad, who is the head of the Mahd Sports Academy and a close associate of sports minister Prince Abdulaziz Al-Faisal.

Several options

While Messi is an ambassador for the Saudi Arabia Tourist Board, Marca is reporting that the Saudis are also planning to offer him a £194m-a-year deal to join the Saudi Pro League, with Al Hilal being the most likely destination.

Despite the speculation, Messi has several other options on the table, including a possible return to Barcelona or a move to David Beckham’s MLS club, Inter Miami. However, it is believed that staying in European football is still the most likely outcome for Messi, as he is understood to want at least one more year at the top level of the game.

His performances for Argentina at the World Cup proved that he remains one of the best players in the world, and he has contributed 18 goals and 17 assists in 31 games for PSG this season.