A-League side Adelaide United have issued a long-shot bid to talismanic footballer Lionel Messi to join their ranks.
The Australian side’s Director Ian Smith wrote a letter titled “Dear Lionel” following media reports about the Argentine wanting to quit his long association with Barcelona FC.
“While Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and others may be chasing your signature, wouldn’t you really like to go somewhere different?” wrote Smith in the letter posted on the club’s Facebook page on Wednesday.
Smith cited his state’s “brilliant” schools, tourist attractions and world-class wines as reasons the Argentine should head Down Under.
“Indeed, as a consumer of Penfolds Grange, one of the world’s finest wines, we will find you a house in the suburb of Magill — It’s just a free-kick away from Penfolds’ award-winning Magill Estate restaurant, where you will have a regular table at your disposal,” he said.
The Adelaide United Director though admitted that the club would not be able to pay Messi the kind of massive salary he is used to.
“We cannot offer you much in the form of financial compensation,” Smith said, while explaining how Covid-19 pandemic has badly damaged his team’s finances.
“But, hey, let’s not let that get in the way of something that promises to be very special; once you are here, you will be so happy and money will seem merely incidental,” he added.
Messi has a contract until 2021 but has grown disappointed with events on and off the pitch at Camp Nou in recent months.
According to ESPN, Barcelona confirmed that they were notified by Messi of his decision via burofax, a service used in Spain to urgently dispatch a document that requires proof to third parties.
The announcement comes 11 days after Barcelona’s humiliating 2-8 loss to Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarterfinals, one of the worst defeats in the player’s career and in the club’s history.