Disguised Lionel Messi lands in Barcelona ‘via airport’s secret door with 15 bags’

A disguised Lionel Messi is said to have returned to Barcelona using a secret door at the airport – with an emotional return on the cards as his PSG contract runs down

Argentina's forward Lionel Messi walks at the Zhukovsky airport, near Moscow, on June 9, 2018, as Argentina's national football team arrives ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup.

Lionel Messi has reportedly taken an important step in a potential Barcelonareturn by bringing huge amounts of luggage back to Spain from his home in France.

Spanish media reports the 35-year-old used a secret door at Barcelona Airport and wore a cap in a bid not to be seen alongside 15 suitcases, with his Nou Camp return ‘closer than ever’, as PSGcontract talks are on hold.

Messi is increasingly unlikely to agree a new deal in Ligue 1 after two years playing alongside Kylian Mbappe and Neymar, with Barcelona manager and former team-mate Xavi keen on a reunion.

Reporter Gerard Romero went into detail about Messi’s alleged return to the Catalan city, saying the use of a secondary exit is significant.

He added Messi’s right-hand man Pepe Costa was tasked with looking after the 15 suitcases – pointing out the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner usually uses the main exit.

The Mirror had reported Barcelona are stepping up their interest in re-signing Messi with his two years in France set to expire in June.

PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 10: Leo Messi looks on during a Paris Saint-Germain training session on March 10, 2023 in Paris, France.
Lionel Messi’s PSG contract expires at the end of the season

Xavi played alongside Lionel Messi on 399 occasions for Barcelona, taking over in the dugout in 2021 with La Liga glory on the horizon.

Messi found his feet in France after initial struggles, scoring 20 goals in all competitions this season after 11 last time out.

The World Cup winning Argentina skipper has been open about Barcelona being his home – and a return with wife Antonela Roccuzzo and their three sons could be imminent.

BERLIN, GERMANY - JUNE 06: Lionel Messi and Xavi Hernandez of Barcelona celebrate with the trophy after the UEFA Champions League Final between Juventus and FC Barcelona at Olympiastadion on June 6, 2015 in Berlin, Germany.
Xavi played alongside Lionel Messi on 399 occasions for Barcelona

Xavi told the Hindustan Times in February: “Why not? (about a possible return for Messi) I think it depends on him.

“What he wants, what he feels. Of course, Barcelona is always Messi’s home. Doors will be opened for Leo, especially if I’m the coach here.

“Let’s see what he wants to do. The decision depends on Messi more than the club.”

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