The Blaugrana legend admits that the mercurial Argentine may be heading for a summer exit, but he remains the finest talent at Camp Nou
Lionel Messi is back to his best at Barcelona and looks to have “at least two or three more seasons” in him “at the highest level”, says Rivaldo.
The mercurial Argentine took a while to get going in 2020-21 after seeing a summer transfer window dominated by speculation regarding his future.
Messi had informed Barca of his desire to move on, with the 33-year-old growing disillusioned with life at Camp Nou on and off the field.
He eventually reversed that decision and revealed in an interview with Goal that he will be honouring the final year of his contract.
That deal continues to tick down towards free agency, with the six-time Ballon d’Or winner free to speak with suitors outside of Spain if he wishes.
Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are considered to be heading the queue for his signature, with the Premier League and Ligue 1 giants eager to add an all-time great to their books.
Rivaldo admits that Messi appears to be edging towards the exits, but he has seen a spark rediscovered by the South American of late.
With that in mind, the former Blaugrana star believes the modern day icon can remain at the top of his game for several more seasons, with there no threat of him fizzling out any time soon.
Rivaldo told Betfair of a man who has contributed 12 goals and six assists to the Barca cause this season: “Lionel Messi has started 2021 very strongly with great performances, goals and assists as we are all used to seeing.
“It’s important for him and the club to maintain their relationship, as he might be ending his time as a Barcelona player.
“We still don’t know if he will renew his contract, but at least we are watching him play near his best again, which indicates he should keep playing at the highest level for at least 2-3 more seasons.
“We must appreciate the pleasure of watching him perform such magnificent football.
“Anyway, it’s important to note that even when Messi isn’t playing at his best, he still continues to be the best player at Barcelona, which magnifies his quality and importance to the club.”
Messi netted twice in his most recent appearance, as Barca edged out Athletic Club 3-2, and has found the target on five occasions through his last six outings