"After 21 years, I'm leaving with my wife, my three little Catalan-Argentine kids, and I can't tell you we won't come back because this is my home, and I promised my children that," Lionel Messi, on his dreaded departure day from Barcelona, made a promise.
And after two years, in which he has conquered his final peak and won the holy grail of football, it seems like a reality that Messi's promise will be fulfilled. Messi might just be back in the Blaugrana colours next summer.
At this point, the life of the Argentine feels like a movie script. From all the heartbreaks to eternal glory, Leo's life has panned out like a typical film protagonist; from despair, destitute, and disappointment, he has turned it around to be magical, magnificent, and marvellous.
However, there has been one thorn in these couple of years: the PSG ultras. For all the glory Messi has brought himself and Argentina, he has not been able to become 'the one' for the Parisians as they adore, expectedly, their own Kylian Mbappe more and seemingly jeer at the Argentine every time anything goes south.
On the other hand, Barcelona are still dreaming. Their President Joan Laporta, presumably, is not willing to let his legacy be the one to let Lionel Messi leave, and he has Barcelona head coach Xavi Hernandez by his side in this quest.
While the Catalans are in a comfortable lead in La Liga, their European nights have become dreaded since the little magic man left them. In both seasons, they were relegated to the Europa League and then failed to do anything substantial there too.
It has already been revealed that Xavi has been talking to Messi for some time now, and La Liga, known for their rigid financial fair play structure, is reportedly willing to loosen the grip for Messi's return because that would help their marketing cause too.
However, the season is yet to end, and Messi's return still hangs on a tight thread because of the financial mess the Catalan club are still in.
But if they somehow manage to do it, that will probably be the biggest fairytale ending in football and probably what the greatest of the game deserves.
Tears from that evening in 2021 will be a page to erase from history, and Barcelona will once again be proud of having their golden boy back, and if anybody asked about it, they never wanted him to leave and neither did he.
For now, everything is hidden in the future, although news about Messi's entourage and Barcelona being in contact has already come to light. Apparently, Messi's primary goal is to return to Catalonia next season.
Although, at this point, the Argentina skipper is willing to keep it under a shroud of mystery.
"I don't know what the future holds. I always like to fantasise about what might happen. But I really don't know what it will be. What God wants, will happen," he said in a recent interview.
In the movie 'The Pursuit of Happyness', when Chris Gardner finally gets the job, he breaks out crying in happiness. That was the World Cup win for Messi.
The return to Barcelona would be the cherry on the top, and the post-credits of the movie, turning Messi's life into, as Martin Scorcese says, 'Cinema'.