PSG confirm Messi will depart at end of season

Lionel Messi will play his final game for Paris St-Germain against Clermont on Saturday, says manager Christophe Galtier.

It was first reported in May that the 35-year-old Argentina forward would leave when his contract ends this summer.

Messi, who joined on a free transfer from Barcelona in July 2021, helped PSG win two successive Ligue 1 titles.

“I had the privilege of coaching the best player in the history of football,” said Galtier.

“This will be his last match at the Parc des Princes and I hope that he will receive the warmest of welcomes.”

PSG increased security at the homes of Messi, forward Neymar, midfielder Marco Verratti and Galtier last month following protest from fans.

It followed a defeat by Lorient and Messi being suspended for two weeks after travelling to Saudi Arabia without PSG’s permission. He later apologised to his team-mates.

Messi captained Argentina to victory at the 2022 World Cup and, following his return from the tournament, appeared set to stay at PSG.

The two parties reached an agreement in principle to extend his stay by a year before changing their minds.

Messi has 21 goals and 20 assists for PSG in all competitions this season, and 32 goals in 74 matches for the club overall.

PSG have been knocked out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage in the past two seasons.

Spanish papers claim Messi is set to make a decision on his future soon but will not return to Barcelona, the club where he spent 21 years.

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