Ferdinand believes Messi could quit Barcelona after Champions League debacle

Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand believes Lionel Messi could head for the exit door at Barcelona following the club’s embarrassing European display against Bayern Munich in Lisbon. The Catalan giants were expected to face a huge test in their Champions League quarter-final against Bayern and they miserably failed as they were thrashed 8-2 on the night.

With the 8-2 defeat, the Blaugrana have suffered their first trophyless season since 2008 and Ferdinand feels Messi may consider a fresh challenge away from the club, he told BT Sport: “What is Messi thinking going home tonight? Does he want to spend his time left in that shirt given the performances and the way the squad is looking at the moment in comparison to other teams around Europe. Has he got the time to sit there and wait? Football is a game that comes and goes very quickly in your life so these next two years where he's still going to have the power to influence games the way he does, is he going to want to be doing that but not competing for the big titles?”

Barcelona are likely to be on the lookout for a new head coach after the outcome and reports have claimed that Mauricio Pochettino is one of the favourites for the head coach position. The Uruguayan has previously said that he would never manage Barcelona due to his Espanyol roots, but he has recently refused to rule out the option.
It is understood that the Blaugrana had made contact with Pochettino even before the debacle against Bayern as they are far from impressed with the work of Setien. The La Liga outfit could also part ways with a number of players after the humiliation, but it remains to be seen whether they can receive suitable offers, considering clubs have been hampered financially by the coronavirus pandemic.