Lionel Messi has agreed to a two-year deal with Paris St-Germain
The deal is subject to a medical.
The 34-year-old Argentina captain left Barcelona – the only club he has ever played for – as they were unable to afford a new deal under La Liga’s financial fair play rules.
Considered one of the greatest players of all time, Messi scored a record 672 goals in 778 games for Barca, the club he joined as a 13-year-old.
He won the Ballon d’Or a record six times and lifted 35 trophies with the Catalan club.
Messi will become PSG’s fourth free-transfer signing this summer after the arrivals of midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum, defender Sergio Ramos and goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.
Messi had agreed a new deal – on 50% of his old wages – to stay at Barcelona but the club could not afford to implement it because they were so far above the wage limit allowed by La Liga.
“He used to earn 140m euros gross a year at Barca, that’s around £125m,” said Balague. “Take off about 40-50% for tax.
“He agreed to stay at Barcelona by reducing his wages by 50%, not more than that because that’s illegal to do so [under Spanish law]. Basically, the league wouldn’t believe he was reducing his wages to zero, which is what Barcelona may have tried to do as they are 1bn euros in debt. Basically, they cannot afford him.”
Source: European Media