In a lengthy interview with The Athletic, Ronald Koeman finally disclosed his point of view on the Lionel Messi transfer saga. The Dutch manager is not sure that at the end of the season the Barcelona captain will remain on. He is also, however, prepared to recognize the Argentine decision and to step forward accordingly.
Messi, 33 years old, is a football club hero and has been with the Catalans since he was just 13 years old. No one could picture him playing at another side, and the entire footballing world was surprised when he put in an official transfer request.
His decision to leave the club came in the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League after an utterly crushing loss at the hands of the German powerhouse, Bayern Munich.
Together with La Liga, Barcelona stopped the veteran from moving away from the club by claiming that the season was already officially over and Messi had missed his window of opportunity. This left the player frustrated, but until the end of the 2020-21 season, he agreed to stay at the club. Everyone wonders if he will leave or stay at his boyhood club because the player is in the last five months of his deal.
In the interview, Koeman said he hopes the captain will remain on, but he is not sure he will. In the interview, he said,
“I do not trust this [Messi extending his contract]. I’m hopeful, yeah, because he’s still a great player and he still wins matches for us, for the squad.