Lionel Messi could make a shock U-turn and stay at FC Barcelona after a revealing comment from his father Jorge.
Messi's father Jorge, who is also his agent, met with Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu earlier this week.
That meeting is said to have ended in an impasse, with Messi's camp insisting he should be allowed to leave for free. Barcelona, on the other hand, are adamant the special clause that would allow him to do so has expired, and that his €700 million (R13.9 billion) release clause remains in place, meaning that it needs to be paid if he is to depart. The club has also reportedly offered him a new two-year deal.
If both parties continue to hold their current stance, matters might be taken to court, which could see FIFA get involved and set a transfer fee for the 33-year-old, as Spanish football expert Guillem Balague has explained.
Jorge Messi was asked whether there was a possibility of his son staying at the Nou Camp and he simply replied: "Yes," according to Cuatro.
When asked how the meeting with the Barca president went, he added: "Very good."
Meanwhile, Manchester City have indicated they are not able to pay a fee in addition to the Argentine's lofty wages, which has left the player with a difficult decision to make.
As a consequence, "there's a 90% chance that Messi stays at Barcelona", according to TyC Sports journalist Martin Arevalo, who broke the news about Messi's burofax to the club and is said to be close to the situation.
"Messi is evaluating whether to stay in Barcelona until 2021 and leave in a great way after finishing his contract."
According to the same report, Messi and his father will meet on Thursday to make a decision on his future.
Click through the gallery below to see 10 players who could replace Messi at Barca should he still decide to leave: