Lionel Messi says age won’t be a factor in determining when he retires

The question on many soccer fans’ minds these days is “when will Messi retire?” and the Argentina star has provided an answer (sort of).

Lionel Messi is still producing highlights on what feels like a weekly basis with Inter Miami but has given fans a clue about his retirement situation.

When speaking with Big Time Podcast the 36-year-old said that it’s not a certain age that will mark his retirement, but his play will be the determining factor.

When will Messi retire?

“(I will retire when) I feel that I am no longer performing, that I am no longer enjoying it or helping my teammates,” Messi said.

"I am very self-critical. I know when I am doing well, when I am not, when I play well and when I play poorly. When I feel it's time to take that step, I will do it without thinking about age.

"If I feel good, I will try to continue competing because it's what I like and what I know how to do."

The timeline of when Messi decides to hang up his boots doesn’t have an exact date but it’s likely to be in the next couple years. He’s not the only superstar nearing the end as Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to retire after one or two more seasons.

Messi was also asked during the podcast what his plans were after he’s finished playing professionally.

"I haven't thought about it yet. For now, I try to enjoy each day, each moment, without thinking about the future. I don't have anything clear yet," Messi said. "I hope to keep playing for a while longer, because that's what I enjoy. 

When the time comes, I will surely find the path to what fulfils me and what I like, and a new role."

At the club level it seems that Messi will coast into the sunset of his career with Inter Miami. This season he already has five goals in five games along with two assists.

As for his time with Argentina he has one last task at hand with this summer’s Copa América.

Messi has already said that the 2022 World Cup was his last as he’ll be 38 years old during the 2026 edition. 

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