Lionel Messi

Lionel Messi wins award as best player in world football for seventh time

Messi, 34, helped his country win the Copa America, his first international honour, and has scored 40 goals in 2021 - 28 for Barcelona, four for Paris St-Germain and eight for Argentina.

Bayern Munich and Poland striker Robert Lewandowski came second, Chelsea and Italy midfielder Jorginho was third and Real Madrid's French striker Karim Benzema finished fourth.

The Ballon d'Or is voted for by 180 journalists from around the world, although there was no award in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Argentine 'would love' to return to Barcelona as a sporting director

Messi, 34, made an emotional exit from the Nou Camp in August after more than 20 years, joining Paris St-Germain.

While he is not thinking about retirement yet, he "would love to be a sporting director at some point".

He added: "I don't know if it will be in Barcelona or if it will be something else. If there's the chance, I would like to go back and contribute."

In an interview with Spanish newspaper Sport, the six-time Ballon d'Or winner said: "I always said that I would love to be able to help the club.

Messi replaced on home debut

Summer signing Messi hit the angle of post and bar with a free-kick in the first half and forced a save from Anthony Lopes but was below his best.

With the score at 1-1, he was replaced by right-back Achraf Hakimi and did not look happy at coming off.

Messi was given a round of applause, but not a standing ovation by his fans.

The 34-year-old, who left Barcelona this summer, did not stop but briefly said something to boss Mauricio Pochettino while walking past him to the bench.

Messi plays his first game for PSG

Mbappe gave PSG a taste of what they would be missing if he left for Real Madrid, who have made bids to recruit the France striker since Messi joined on a two-year deal from Barcelona.

PSG are top of the standings with a maximum 12 points.

All 20,545 tickets available were sold at the Auguste Delaune stadium to see 34-year-old Messi play and the fans, who chanted the Argentina forward's name, were rewarded in the 66th minute when he replaced the disappointing Neymar.

Lionel Messi agrees Paris St-Germain deal after Barcelona exit - Guillem Balague

The deal, which has the option of a third year, is subject to a medical.

The Argentina captain, 34, left Barca - the only club he has played for - as they could not afford a new deal under La Liga's financial fair play rules.

A PSG news conference will take place in the auditorium of the Parc des Princes on Wednesday at 10:00 BST.

Mauricio Pochettino's PSG finished second to Lille in Ligue 1 last season.

Messi's wages too much for Barcelona

Both the club, which has suffered steep losses recently, and 34-year-old Messi had wanted to sign a new contract. But the Argentine's deal would have taken salaries to 110 percent of the club's earnings, a financially risky move given the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, Laporta said.

"The club is above everything - even above the best player in the world,

"We reached agreement but couldn't formalise it, because of the club's economic situation, which means we can't register the player due to salary limits," he said.

Lionel Messi scored twice as he became Argentina's most capped player

 Messi set up Papu Gomez's sixth-minute opener, before scoring a penalty and adding a second just before half-time to extend his record goals tally to 75.

Elsewhere, Manchester United striker Edinson Cavani scored a 21st-minute penalty as Uruguay beat Paraguay 1-0.

Inter Milan's Lautaro Martinez also scored in Argentina's win and the team are now unbeaten in their last 17 games.

They take on Ecuador in the quarter-finals on Sunday, while Uruguay play Colombia on Saturday.

Hosts Brazil play Chile, while Paraguay face Peru.

   

Barca to sue newspaper as Messi's billion dollar contract revealed

The club will file action against Spanish newspaper El Mundo, who published the contract.

According to the newspaper Messi was paid an eye watering four-year deal worth $932 million.

The contracted period ends on the 30th June and Messi has been linked with a move to Manchester City and Paris St-Germain

Barcelona say they will take "appropriate legal action" against the Spanish newspaper El Mundo for publishing the details.

Barcelona star Lionel Messi facing lengthy suspension for hitting opponent

Messi could be suspended for up to 12 games for the red card he received in the final minutes of his team's 3-2 loss to Athletic Bilbao in Seville on Sunday (Monday NZT).

After passing the ball out to the left flank, Messi swung his right arm towards the head of Athletic forward Asier Villalibre as they ran forward toward the box.

Villalibre immediately fell to the ground and Messi was given his first red card in 753 appearances for Barcelona.

Messi equals Pele's record of 643 goals for a single club

The Argentinian star, 33, hit the milestone goal with a diving header just before halftime immediately after his penalty was saved by Valencia keeper Jaume Domenech.

Pele scored 643 goals in 19 seasons for Brazilian side Santos.