Opponents for Lionel Messi’s Special Tribute Match with Barcelona at Camp Nou Revealed

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    Football superstar Lionel Messi is reportedly set to participate in a special tribute match that will see Barcelona take on the Argentina national team, as per El Nacional reports.

    FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football – Lionel Messi holds an FC Barcelona press conference – 1899 Auditorium, Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain – August 8, 2021 Lionel Messi during the press conference REUTERS/Albert Gea

    Messi, arguably the greatest player in Barcelona’s history, arrived in the city at the age of 13 in September 2000, signing a contract to join Barcelona’s renowned La Masia academy.

    1. What language does Messi speak?


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    Lionel Messi’s Journey from Barca to Inter Miami

    Messi made his senior debut in 2004 and left an enduring legacy on the club by the time he concluded his Blaugrana career. In 778 matches, he scored 672 goals and provided 303 assists, establishing himself as the club’s all-time leading goal-scorer.

    During his time with Barca, Leo secured four Champions League titles, 10 La Liga titles, seven Copas del Rey, eight Spanish Super Cups, three UEFA Super Cups, and three Club World Cups. His tally of 35 trophies surpasses that of any other player in the club’s history, with legendary Spanish midfielder Andres Iniesta trailing behind in second place by three trophies.

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    Feb 7, 2024; Tokyo, Japan; Inter Miami CF forward Lionel Messi (10) shoots against Vissel Kobe during the second half of a preseason friendly at Japan National Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Naoki Nishimura-USA TODAY Sports

    Barcelona faced a significant financial crisis in 2021, leading to their inability to extend Lionel Messi’s contract, ultimately resulting in his departure to Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer. Following a two-year stint in the French capital, Messi moved to the newly-established MLS team Inter Miami, where he has been playing since.

    In recognition of Messi’s monumental contribution to the club, Barcelona has decided to honor him with a friendly match at their newly constructed Camp Nou, scheduled to open in late 2024. The match will coincide with Messi’s retirement announcement from football, which is anticipated to occur upon the conclusion of his contract with Inter Miami in 2025, according to the aforementioned report.

    Preparations for the tribute match have already commenced and are expected to persist until Messi’s retirement. The game’s format is set to feature Messi playing one half for Barcelona and the other half for the Argentina national team, symbolizing a fitting conclusion to his remarkable career.

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    Salary of Lionel Messi at Inter Miami Disclosed

    According to Forbes, although Lionel Messi’s salary with Inter Miami is considerably less than the reported $400 million-a-year (£317 million) offer he declined from the Saudi Pro League, he remains one of the highest-paid players in global football.

    Jan 22, 2024; Dallas, TX, USA; Inter Miami forward Lionel Messi (10) in action during the game between FC Dallas and Inter Miami at Cotton Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo

    Mas has stated that Messi’s annual guaranteed earnings will range between $50 million (£39.6 million) and $60 million (£47.55 million). Additionally, he stands to potentially earn more through individual “revenue-sharing” agreements with Apple and Adidas.

    Furthermore, his contract includes a “David Beckham clause” granting him the opportunity to assume ownership of the club without requiring a buy-in.

    As for Messi’s retirement plans, they remain uncertain. He is contracted with Inter Miami until 2025, with the possibility of extending for an additional year.

    Freire Praises Messi’s Leadership Amid Injury Struggles as Inter Miami Prepares for Crucial Second Leg

    Inter Miami defender Nicolas Freire commended Lionel Messi for his exceptional leadership and inspiration, despite the Argentine superstar’s absence in their recent match against Monterrey. Messi, who has been grappling with muscular issues, has missed five games in Miami’s 2024 campaign. However, in the matches he did participate in, Messi showcased his unstoppable talent, tallying five goals and two assists.

    FILE PHOTO: Feb 15, 2024; Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA; Inter Miami CF forward Lionel Messi (10) reacts after shooting the ball against the Newell’s Old Boys during the first half at DRV PNK Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo

    Speaking to Deporte Total USA, Freire, who is on loan in Miami from Mexican side Pumas UNAM, expressed his admiration for Messi’s guidance, emphasizing his significant impact on the team even when not on the field.

    He is a born leader and he is always supporting whether it is his turn to play or not, that is what leaders do and he is always present.”

    In the absence of their superstar, Inter Miami surrendered a 1-0 lead at home, ultimately losing 2-1 against Monterrey in the first leg of their CONCACAF Champions Cup quarter-final. The second leg is scheduled to take place on April 10 in Monterrey, and the Herons are banking on Messi’s full recovery to boost their chances of victory on the field.

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