Messi next club odds: Saudi switch looking more likely
Coral has slashed the odds to 6/4 (from 4/1) on Lionel Messi signing for any Saudi Arabian team as his next club following support in the betting.
Messi’s stint at Paris St Germain is reportedly set to end this summer and Coral have opened a market featuring the Messi next club odds.
The Argentinian, whose contract expires next month, has been on the receiving end of jeering from PSG fans during recent games and his unauthorised trip to Saudi Arabia recently led to a suspension from his bosses in Paris.
The writing now appears to be on the wall for Messi at PSG, whose president Nasser Al Khelaifi was already committed to ending the “bling bling” culture at the club and rebuilding around young, local talent.
The renewal of Kylian Mbappe’s contract last year, even though it came at enormous cost, is seen as part of that new strategy. Messi, however, seems to no longer fit into those plans.
It has been reported Messi’s father, Jorge, informed the club’s director of football a few weeks ago that his son did not want to extend his contract by another year.
The unauthorised trip to Saudi Arabia further upped the ante and it is understood he has been suspended for two weeks from training and matches.
On Wednesday, the Saudi Tourism Authority released details of Messi’s trip to Riyadh. The player and his family “indulged in a fine-dining experience” at the Al Bujairi Terrace, visited the VIA Riyadh luxury retail complex and also the 300-year-old UNESCO World Heritage Site in Diriyah.
Before heading to Diriyah, the family had been to a farm where they fed Arabian gazelles, the release said.
Amnesty International said earlier this year that Messi’s ambassador role with Saudi Arabia was part of the country’s “aggressive sportswashing programme”, with Saudi authorities “seeking to exploit the celebrity appeal of elite sport to deflect attention from the country’s appalling human rights record”.
Coral’s John Hill said: “Lionel Messi recently visited Saudi Arabia, which has resulted in him picking up a suspension from the French club. The six-time Ballon d’Or winner could return to the Middle East later this year, as he is being well-backed to sign for a Saudi club when his contract expires this summer.”
Lionel Messi next club odds
6/4 Any Saudi Arabian club
6/1 Any MLS club
10/1 Any Argentina league team
20/1 Chelsea, Manchester City
View the latest football odds
All odds and markets correct as of date of publication