“But we cannot realistically compete” – Club chief confirms Serie A giants were in talks to sign Lionel Messi before PSG switch

Messi was approached by Inter before joining PSG
Messi was approached by Inter before joining PSG

Inter Milan vice president Javier Zanetti has revealed holding discussions with Lionel Messi over a possible move to the San Siro. The Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) forward was then close to leaving Barcelona and Inter were interested in exploring the possibility of getting the Argentine on board.

Zanetti and Co. approached Messi's entourage but had to accept defeat in their pursuit as they were unable to compete with PSG financially. The 35-year-old eventually moved to Paris, joining them on a two-year contract.

“We spoke to Messi because of the relationship we have when there was this possibility that he would leave Barcelona,” Zanetti said on DAZN (via PSGTalk).

The former Argentina defender was among those who did not expect Messi to leave the Blaugrana.

“I would never have imagined his farewell to Barcelona. But we cannot realistically compete, from an economic point of view, with teams like City or Paris Saint Germain,” he added.

The Argentina forward's contract with PSG is set to expire later this year but the French champions have the option of extending the deal by another year. There have been rumors of a possible Barcelona return as well but it remains to be seen which way the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner decides to go.

Lionel Messi back to his brilliant best after a sub-par first season with PSG

Lionel Messi did not have the best of starts to life in Paris. He could score just 11 and assist 15 goals in 34 appearances for PSG across competitions in the 2021/22 season. As a result, he copped criticism from several quarters for failing to adapt to life in France.

But he shut down all doubters in his second season with the club. In just over half a season, Lionel Messi has scored 15 and assisted 14 goals for the club. He also won the FIFA World Cup last year, netting seven and assisting three goals for Argentina in the competition.

While he is yet to hit his pre-World Cup form since returning from the mid-season break, Messi is expected to back banging goals for PSG as soon as they try to win the elusive UEFA Champions League trophy.

The Argentine has the likes of Neymar and Kylian Mbappe to help him with the huge task.

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