"We tried to sign Lionel Messi", reveals former AC Milan director Paolo Maldini
Messi joined Inter Miami last summer
According to Paolo Maldini, AC Milan tried desperately to sign Lionel Messi, the star of Inter Miami and Argentina.
Maldini revealed Milan’s aggressive efforts to recruit Messi during an interview with the PoretCast podcast. The former player and technical director put in ten days of nonstop work to achieve this goal.
The summer of 2021 was perhaps the most important time to try to get the Argentine’s signature because of financial difficulties that kept Barcelona from extending his contract, thus the forward chose to join Paris Saint-Germain.
“We tried to sign Leo Messi. I wanted him, we called for it but after 10 days we understood it was just impossible,” Maldini said. “It is too late now, but a player like Messi is a spectacle for anyone to witness. When I read that he might even go to Inter, I got scared!”
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Although attempting to sign Messi, Milan moved on winning the Scudetto in the 2021–2022 season. Before committing to Inter Miami earlier in 2023, the eight-time Ballon d’Or winner lived in Paris for two years.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe, who will own almost 25% of the team, is reorganising the sporting hierarchy at Old Trafford, and as part of that effort, Maldini has been linked to a move to Manchester United.
Messi will take a well-earned break after leading Argentina to another victory against Brazil in the 2026 World Cup qualifications before playing again for Inter Miami in February 2024.
The champion of the World Cup signs a two-year deal in Miami worth between $50 and $60 million, with a choice to stay for another two years.
Adidas and Apple have contributed to his contract, with Messi receiving a share from sales of shirts and from Apple TV subscriptions that allow him to watch Major League Soccer.
Messi assisted Miami in winning the Leagues Cup, the team’s first-ever trophy, after joining the team. But after a terrible start to the season, and Messi his squad were unable to advance to the MLS playoffs.
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