The impossible has happened. FC Barcelona officially announced this afternoon that Lionel Messi would not be returning to the club.
After a summer of negotiations that were seemingly going well, they’ve reached a point wherein the financial situation La Liga and Barcelona are in means we won’t be seeing a deal finalized. This is wild news.
Here's the official statement:
Despite FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi having reached an agreement and the clear intention of both parties to sign a new contract today, this cannot happen because of financial and structural obstacles (Spanish Liga regulations).
As a result of this situation, Messi shall not be staying on at FC Barcelona. Both parties deeply regret that the wishes of the player and the club will ultimately not be fulfilled.
FC Barcelona wholeheartedly expresses its gratitude to the player for his contribution to the aggrandisement of the club and wishes him all the very best for the future in his personal and professional life.
FC Barcelona | Source
We’ll have more on the story as details emerge.