• Sports - Football - Transfers
  • Updated: June 07, 2023

Messi, Benzema Top Summer Exits Across Europe [SEE LIST]

Messi, Benzema Top Summer Exits Across Europe [SEE LIST]

Lionel Messi

The end of club football usually brings about players leaving a club for another either in a Bosman move or high transfer which is usually the talk of the transfer period.

With the club football set to finish on June 10th with the climax of the UEFA Champions League final in Istanbul, several moves have been speculated and confirmed across Europe.

AllNews Nigeria takes a look at just 10 of them:

- Lionel Messi (Paris Saint-Germain):

Arguably and by far the greatest footballer of this generation, Messi brought an end to his 2-year stay in France with a 2-1 defeat to relegated Clermont Foot.

The match was marred by jeers to the 7-time Ballon d'Or, this is just a cherry on top of the rotten cake fans in France showed to the former Barca man.

Lionel Messi Kisses World Cup

In a controversial trip to Saudi Arabia, Messi was welcomed back by angry fans of PSG who were telling him to leave.

The diminutive Argentine left Barcelona after more than 14 years due to financial wages that left the club hanging by the thread.

PSG brought him on with the promise of a Champions League title which he hasn't been able to deliver but he did add more to his cabinet with the most coveted World Cup.

He showed glimpses of his brilliance and exceptionalism at Parc de Princes but he would never be dear to the PSG fans as he was at Barcelona. 

He now faces two options; return home (Barcelona) or move to Saudi Arabia to earn more money. 

- Karim Benzema (Real Madrid to Al-Ittihad)

The French man's decision to leave Real Madrid definitely came as a shock to everyone because not in anyone's dream will be thinking "Big Benz" will leave the Spanish capital after winning the Ballon d'Or.

After the departure of Ronaldo, and Bale's dip in form he resorted to Golf, it was Karim who would rise to the fur of the remaining BBC trident and make a partnership with Vinicius to conquer Europe once more.

With a familiar foe in the final -- Liverpool, Madrid matched on to win their 14th European crown in the 2021-22 season after winning La Liga on a wide margin.

This earned Benzema the UEFA best player and the Ballon d'Or and a recall back to the French National team where he won the UEFA Nations League. 


A year after that, Benzema departs Spain to join Ronaldo in Saudi Arabia not as a friend but as an opposition; joining the Champions Al-Ittihad.

He signed a three-year deal with Al-Ittihad till 2026.

- Kai Havertz (Chelsea)

Chelsea are now a shadow of themselves after the infamous Champions League title under Thomas Tuchel.

The final against Manchester City ended 1-0 with German playmaker turn Striker Kai Havertz scoring the goal.

Since his move from Bayer Leverkusen, Havertz has been used as a striker at Chelsea -- a role he has not been able to adapt to.

Kai Havertz Celebrates Goal For Chelsea v Wolves

With the appointment of Pochettino, after a dismissal season where Chelsea finished below the top 10, the squad overhaul will definitely affect Havertz with the Argentine tactician preferring a more potent point man. 

Real Madrid's interest in Havertz is surprising but Ancelotti definitely has a plan for him with transfer expert Romano already suggesting a deal is close.

- Sergio Busquets (Barcelona)

This 6 feet, 2 inches midfielder has been the heartbeat of Barcelona's defence for years.

Busquets don't run, he moves the ball, he is perhaps the only person left from the tiki-taka days at Barcelona. 

Sergio Busquets

Now, he takes his leave. Barcelona are on high alert to replace him as they set their sight on conquering Spain, and Europe next season.

- Marco Asensio (Real Madrid to PSG)

Regarded as one of the best left-footed players after Messi by Zinedine Zidane, Asensio is electrifying in his play especially when he is on the right flank.

Even being a peripheral player at Madrid, Asensio scored 12 goals this season in 48 appearances with 18 starts.

Marco Asensio

He shunned Aston Villa and joins Paris Saint-Germain in a Bosman move.

He is a steal for PSG and a loss for Madrid as he would have commanded a fee of 80-100M euros.

Illkay Gundogan (Manchester City)

Gundogan is a dynamite waiting to explode at the beginning of the season.

He will wait till the winter half of the season and he would explode.

He doesn't have injury that much, he is swift, clinical and a box-to-box midfielder. Under Pep, Gundogan can even be a false nine. 


He is the least player on this list to move after a 12 seconds stunner against Manchester United in the FA Cup, Gundogan will surely be offered a new deal by Man City. 

If he refuses to take it, then Barcelona and other clubs in Europe will be gunning for his signature.

- Dusan Vlahovic (Juventus)

The Serbian striker will be looking at playing in the Champions League, something he will not be able to do at Juventus, so he just has to leave.

Dusan Vlahovic

Arsenal will be looking to secure his services after returning to the top tier of European football finishing second in the Premier League.

Real Madrid would want to replace Benzema so do not be surprised if they register their interests as well.

It is going to be a long summer for Juventus as they will start bleeding stars after missing out on European football.

- Mason Mount (Chelsea)

Mount is set to join the exclusive list of players who played for Chelsea and Manchester United with a move on the horizon.

His departure is also a surprise, although missing out on Europe is now one of the worst fates that can befall a top side.

This is one of the reasons, Mount will be making this switch, another is Pochettino might not include him in his plans.

- Youri Tielemans (Leicester City)

Obviously, if missing out on European football is one of the worst fates, then relegation is the worst of them all. Leicester City; winning the Premier League, and FA Cup now are relegated to Division 2. 

They announced on Monday, they will be losing 7 players either due to contract expiration or a transfer move. Such is the situation of a relegated top side. 

Youri Tielemans

The Belgian midfielder will most likely be heading straight to Arsenal or he will definitely not be short of suitors for his playing abilities. 

- Jordi Alba (Barcelona)

The best left back of this generation I say, Alba is one of the modern full-backs who understand that the position is more attack than defence.

He is quick, a good crosser and a finisher too.

His partnership with Lionel Messi coughed up 14 goals in 2018 leaving an indelible mark on the football world.

The Spaniard ends his stay at Barcelona with a La Liga trophy. 

Even at age 34, Alba is not short of suitors in Europe with links to Italy and France very much available for him.

Notable mentions:

- Angel Di Maria

- Samuel Umtiti

- Caglar Soyuncu

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