- Messi snubbed Barcelona return
- Xavi says Argentine wants 'quieter life'
- Coach called for 'empathy' for Messi
WHAT HAPPENED? The Argentine icon had been linked with a switch back to Barca after leaving Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the season, but he opted to continue his career in MLS. Messi explained that he wanted to go back to the club that raised him, but did not want to leave his future in someone else's hands.
WHAT THEY SAID: Xavi, however, feels that the 35-year-old wanted to join an easier league after two years of scrutiny at Paris Saint-Germain, telling Jijantes: "I have noticed a change in him over the last few days and weeks. He doesn't see things as clearly and we have to respect him. We often don't put ourselves in someone else's situation, we lack empathy. Being Leo Messi can't be easy. He never has any peace and has to be a 10 in everything. He has seen that he hasn't had a good time and he doesn't want this kind of pressure, it's normal."
He added: "The excitement was generated because we both talked, we have talked a lot. We were all looking forward to it, first for him, then for me and then for the club. But the circumstances didn't work out... He wanted to lower the level of pressure and tension. He wants a quieter life."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: After turning down Barcelona and Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal, Messi agreed to a reported two-and-a-half contract with the Florida club. He may not be the only ex-Barca sensation to join the club, with Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba and Luis Suarez also linked to Miami, while they are also said to be in for Angel Di Maria.
IN THREE PHOTOS:Getty Images
WHAT NEXT? Messi will officially join Inter Miami next month and could make his debut for the club when they face Cruz Azul on July 21.