By Andrew Atkinson
Lionel Messi, who put in a transfer request last year, is free to speak to clubs outside of Spain about leaving Barca in the summer.
Manchester City are yet to make a move for Messi said his spokesperson, who reiterated the Argentina forward will choose whether to leave or stay at the end of the season, having announced his intention to do so in an interview in December.
Despite that want-away Messi has re-settled at the Nou Camp this season, since demanding to be released from his contract last summer, when Pep Guardiola and City were linked to sign him.
Short of entering into a legal dispute over a contract clause that would have allowed him a free transfer, Messi stayed – but is now free to negotiate with other clubs outside Spain.
City, Paris Saint-Germain and a move to Major League Soccer in the USA are options as Messi entered into the last six months of his current deal.
Messi is reportedly keen to find out the result of the presidential election in March, and what will be offered to him, both in financial and sporting incentives, before making a decision on his future.
Messi, 33, has publicly aired he would like to play in Major League Soccer before he retires.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner’s current contract signed in 2017 was leaked last month by Spanish newspaper El Mundo, claiming its worth to total £492m – €555m.