Lionel Messi transfer interest confirmed by president of Saudi Arabian FA: 'It would complete the great leap made by Cristiano Ronaldo'

Lionel Messi Cristiano Ronaldo Saudi All Stars 2022-23Getty Images

WHAT HAPPENED? Pro League side Al-Hilal have been heavily linked with a move for the Argentine, with an exorbitant €220 million per year offer first tabled in March, which has since almost tripled to a staggering €600-a-year. While president Al-Misehal was unable to substantiate those figures, he did admit that having two of the game's greatest ever players would complete the Gulf State's giant leap in its football development.

WHAT THEY SAID: "I have no news to be honest," the FA president told Saudi outlet SSC News. "There's no doubt that personally, I would like to see Messi in the Saudi Arabian league. It would complete the great leap that was made by Cristiano."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Of course, while Al-Hilal is by far the most lucrative offer Messi has on the table, and where he already has links due to being the state's tourism embassador, it isn't the Argentine's only option. David Beckham's MLS side Inter Miami have also been mooted as a potential next destination, although a romantic return to Barcelona has been the most openly speculated on by Blaugrana figures. It has also been reported that an exchange deal between those two clubs could be reached, where Messi would spend the next 18 months in Catalunya before finishing his career in the United States.

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Lionel Messi PSG Saudi Arabia HIC 16:9Gettyronaldo al-nassr 2022-23GettyLionel Messi Saudi friendly 2023Getty Images

WHAT NEXT? For now, though, the Argentine has one more match to play for Paris Saint-Germain before their triumphant Ligue 1 season draws to a close, at home to Clermont Foot on Saturday. Messi may yet remain at the Parc des Princes after featuring in their latest kit promo, although he has less than a month left to agree on a new deal.