Report: Messi could opt to become free agent next summer

AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

In the world of soccer, rumors surface on a regular basis, especially when it comes to the game’s biggest stars.

[ MORE: Premier League releases 25-man rosters for 17/18 season ]

One player that has been at the center of transfer gossip recently is Lionel Messi of Barcelona, however, the legitimacy of theses rumors appears to be pointing towards the 30-year-old becoming a free agent in the summer of 2018.

Spanish radio station Onda Cero is reporting that Messi could opt against signing a new deal with Barca next summer, which would allow him to pursue other options in Europe or elsewhere.

Again, this is all speculative, but Messi has had a deal on the table from Barca for some time now and the Argentina international doesn’t appear to be in any hurry to put pen to paper.

Manchester City is a club that continues to be at the center of the Messi sweepstakes talks, and rightfully so considering the player’s relationship with City manager Pep Guardiola, formerly the head coach at Barcelona.

Messi has been involved at Barcelona for nearly two decades, arriving in Spain back in 2001 when the attacker joined the club’s youth academy. Since, Messi has tallied 544 goals in all competitions for the Blaugrana, which is the most all-time at the club.