Currently a free agent, the mercurial Argentine has been tipped to follow in the footsteps of the Portuguese phenomenon and move to Italy.
Three years ago, Cristiano Ronaldo urged Lionel Messi to “leave his comfort zone” by quitting FC Barcelona for a different destination.
Ronaldo issued that “challenge” to Messi not too long after jumping ships from Real Madrid to Juventus in a blockbuster €100 million move.
It was a difficult decision for the Portugal captain as well as the Madridistas – and understandably so. CR7 had scaled great heights of success during his nine years at Santiago Bernabeu, winning trophies after trophies and awards after awards to firmly establish himself as the club’s greatest player of all time and, arguably, the absolute best in the history of the game.
However, such unquenchable is Ronaldo’s thirst for success that he has lead Juventus to numerous titles while remaining at the top of his game despite having reached the late stages of his career.
Messi, who has officially departed his boyhood club, now has a tough decision to make as he searches for a new destination. Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City are showing interest in the Argentine while he has also been tipped to join Juventus.
“Maybe [Messi] misses me,” Ronaldo said in an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport in December 2018.
“I’ve played in England, Spain, Italy, Portugal and with the national team while he’s always been in Spain. Maybe he needs me more. For me, life is a challenge and I like it and I like making people happy.
“I’d like it if he came to Italy one day. I hope he accepts the challenge of leaving his comfort zone.
“But if he’s happy there then I respect that: he’s a fantastic footballer, a good guy, but I don’t miss anything here. This is my new life and I’m happy.”