Barcelona star could receive prison sentence.
Lionel Messi could face up to six years in prison as he continues to be the subject of a tax evasion investigation according to Time.
The 27 year old Barcelona star apparently owes $5.3m (£3.1m) in unpaid taxes and he and his father face the prospect, albeit unlikely, of a jail sentence as well as $32m (£18m) in fines.
Having recently signed a new contract with his Nou Camp side the Argentine international is now the highest paid footballer on the planet and may well have to dig deep into his estimated $180m (£106m) fortune to meet any court judgement.
The ongoing case certainly will have impacted on Messi’s form last term, though clearly his 41 goal haul in 2013/14 is nothing to sniff at it is some way down on his efforts in recent campaigns.
New boss Luis Enrique will hope that any legal concerns are cleared up before the new season gets underway.
SEE ALSO: Top 10 smoking footballers