Barcelona have officially confirmed that Lionel Messi has left the club after he failed to agree a new contract.
Messi was widely expected to sign a new deal, after his previous one expired at the start of June.
However, the Blaugrana have now officially announced that the club’s record scorer will no longer be linked to the club and will be available on a free transfer.
A statement on the club’s official site reads:
“Despite having reached an agreement between FC Barcelona and Leo Messi and with the clear intention of both parties to sign a new contract today, it cannot be formalized due to economic and structural obstacles (Spanish LaLiga regulations).
“Given this situation, Lionel Messi will not continue to be linked to FC Barcelona. Both parties deeply regret that the wishes of both the player and the Club cannot finally be fulfilled.
“Barça would like to thank with all its heart the player’s contribution to the enhancement of the institution and wishes him the best in his personal and professional life.”