Saudi giants Al Hilal will offer Messi $350 million to rival Ronaldo’s Al Nassr
A recent rumour claims that Saudi Arabian club Al Hilal is prepared to offer Lionel Messi a tantalising deal of up to $350 million per year.
Messi is presently under contract with Paris Saint-Germain, but will become a free agent at the end of the summer.
According to L’Equipe, Messi has not agreed to extend his contract at the Parc des Princes, dashing the hopes of interested parties like Inter Miami and his previous side FC Barcelona.
According to Mundo Deportivo on Thursday afternoon, Al Hilal are also interested in luring Messi away from Ligue 1. The Saudi club reportedly has an offer on the table for the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner that would make him the most paid player in the world, surpassing Ronaldo’s generation.
At the beginning of 2023, Ronaldo joined Al Nassr, a team that competes with Al Hilal, and he is expected to earn $210 million year there.
Messi ranked in second place on Forbes’ list of the highest-paid soccer players in the world in 2022 with earnings of $120 million, of which $65 million was earned on the field and $55 million off it.
While Messi’s PSG colleague Kylian Mbappe made $128 million ($110 million on the field and $18 million off it) owing to a hefty contract deal signed in the spring, Ronaldo came in third with $100 million ($40 million on the field and $60 million off it).
Having two of the greatest footballers of all time playing in their local league would be a huge boost for Saudi Arabia as they prepare a bid to host the 2030 World Cup with Greece and Egypt.
Al Hilal are reportedly prepared to pay Messi €300 million ($322 million) or up to $350 million a year, according to Mundo Deportivo, which cites two separate estimates.
Although these are “difficult” sums to turn down, the Catalan daily newspaper wonders “it remains to be seen if the Argentine would agree to move to a country with such different customs and such a complex climate in terms of temperatures”.