Barcelona forward, Leo Messi reportedly turned down a currently unnamed Russian club, who were willing to meet the Argentine’s €250 million release clause, in addition to paying the three-time Ballon d’Or winner a yearly salary of €30 million.
In an article by Barcelona-based sports daily, Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona and Messi both mutually agreed and rejected the offer, despite the incredible sum of money it would give the Catalan giants.
Leo’s father, Jorge Messi, club president, Sandro Rosell and Leo himself, discussed and rejected the offer, with Leo citing two reasons; he is comfortable with his teammates and his goal is to win trophies, something that may not come as frequently with Messi as the star surrounded by a cast of players not as in-sync as he is with his teammates in Barcelona.
The second reason is due to the birth of his son, Thiago and his fiancee, Antonella, and his desire to remain in Barcelona and raise his family.
While it is still unknown who the Russian club was, it is a strong message that many Cules were hoping for, as many felt that after Messi signed his new contract, the club were in their rights and should have raised his €250 million release clause, to something similar to Real Madrid forward, Cristiano Ronaldo’s release clause, which is set at €1 Billion.
Yet, it is a testament to the loyalty he has to the only professional club he has ever known, and a statement to all other clubs who would attempt to lure the Argentine away from the Camp Nou in the future.