Lionel Messi rejoin Barcelona on LOAN in January

Lionel Messi 'could rejoin Barcelona on LOAN in January' if Inter Miami fail to make the MLS playoffs - but the Spanish club are yet to approach David Beckham's team over a move

Barcelona are contemplating a stunning move to bring Lionel Messi back to his boyhood team on loan in January if Inter Miami fail to reach the MLS playoffs.

Messi left Barcelona in the summer of 2021 when the club couldn't afford to renew his contract. He was fully expected to sign a new deal but instead gave a tearful farewell at a press conference, rather than from the Nou Camp field.

Now, according to Spanish publication Sport, the LaLiga team is lining up a remarkable move to give Messi his chance of a proper send-off.

If Miami fail to qualify for the MLS playoffs, the Spanish team are considering a move to sign him on loan in January - when the European transfer window is open.

Sport says no move has currently been discussed with Miami but it is an option that Barcelona are considering.

Lionel Messi is reportedly being considered to rejoin Barcelona in a loan move next January

Miami is currently five points outside of the playoff places in the Eastern Conference with three games of the regular season left to play. Messi's team is not in control of its fate, though - three wins are vital, as well as other results going their way.

They next play on Saturday night, with tough game at home to Cincinnati - the Eastern Conference leaders.

Jorge Mas, who co-owns the MLS team with David Beckham, has spoken of planning to organize a friendly at the Nou Camp between the two sides.

'Messi's departure from Barcelona was not to his liking. He could not say goodbye to his club, which welcomed him as a child, and I think the circumstances were not what Lionel wanted,' Mas told Marca in Spain earlier this week.

'I gave [Messi] my commitment that I will do everything possible in the coming years so that he has the opportunity to say goodbye to his fans in Barcelona.

'Inter Miami will go [to Barcelona] or we will have some kind of match.'

Messi has made an electrifying start to life at Miami but has recently struggled with injury 

Messi has missed Miami's last four games with a scar tissue problem and his coach, the former Barcelona manager Tata Martino, has repeatedly underlined concerns over Messi's workload since arriving in the United States.

It is not yet clear if Messi will be back  for the Cincinnati game but Martino has previously said he expected the Argentina World Cup star to play again this season. 

He was also called up by his country for their next two World Cup qualifiers later this month, which is likely an indication that he is nearing a return.

If Miami reach the post-season, it could mean Messi remains in action up to December 9, which is when the MLS Cup final is staged.

That would then, according to the report in Spain, appear to end any chance of Messi returning to his team to play.

And even if a competitive return to Barcelona failed to materialize, Miami are open to making sure Messi gets his moment with his old team.

  • Lionel Messi cried when he surprisingly left Barcelona two years ago in 2021

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