However, it appears that the Spanish club are closing in on a contract agreement with the Argentine attacker.
According to reports, the club have held positive talks with the player’s father, and a ten-year agreement is believed to be close.
Such a development would be quite stunning because Messi is currently 33 years old, and the 10-year contract would keep him at the club until he is 43. Although the Argentine is still playing at an extremely high level, offering him a 10-year deal seems like a significant gamble right now.
It will be interesting to see if he can regain his form and fitness over the next 10 years.
That said, Messi has the technical ability to play multiple roles, and he could easily slot into a midfield role with age where his fitness and stamina will not be tested as much.
The Argentine is currently operating as an attacking player, but he can play as a central midfielder like the former Manchester United winger Ryan Giggs. The Welshman played as a central midfield towards the end of his career, and that allowed him to play longer than usual.
Keeping Messi at the club for as long as possible is a top priority for Barcelona, and it will be interesting to see if they can get the new deal rubber-stamped as soon as possible.
The player has recently been linked with the likes of Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City.
Lionel Messi has more goals in 2021 than any other player in Europe's top five leagues
Luis Suarez: "I can't imagine Messi away from Barça, as a club fan, and as a friend, I would like to tell him not to leave."