Expectations were sky-high for a 16-year-old Argentine named Lionel Messi when he debuted for Barcelona on Nov. 16, 2003, under manager Frank Rijkaard in a friendly match against Porto, which was led by upstart manager Jose Mourinho.

Nearly 18 years later, Messi has left an oversized imprint on not just Barcelona but also the entire sport.

On Sunday, the 34-year-old from Rosario tearfully bid farewell to a club that he never thought he'd leave.

“My family and I were convinced we were going to stay here, at home,” Messi said at a press conference. “This is the end with this club and now a new story will begin.

"Yes, it’s one of the most difficult moments for me. I don’t want to leave this club. It’s a club I love and this is a moment I didn’t expect.

“Last year, I wanted to leave. This year I wanted to stay. That’s why I’m so sad. It was like my blood ran cold. I was really sad. It was really difficult right up to now. I’m still trying to process it all. When I get home I will still feel bad. It will be even worse. I’m not ready for this.”

Messi's accomplishments for Barcelona are nearly impossible to describe. Unlike his contemporary Cristiano Ronaldo who played for four major clubs, and his fellow countryman Diego Maradona who is most remembered for World Cup glory, Messi always seemed synonymous with one club.

Messi was the Nou Camp. The Nou Camp was Messi.

Messi and Barcelona won more than 30 titles together. Among the trophies were four Champions League titles, 10 La Liga titles, seven Copa Del Rey titles.

His club records are mind-boggling.

Not only is he Barcelona's all-time goalscorer, he holds the record (672) for most goals by any player for one club, surpassing Pele's 643 goals for Santos.

Messi has more appearances (778) for Barcelona than any other player. He leaves Barca with 11 more than midfield legend Xavi.

In the 2011-12 season, Messi scored the most goals (73) by a player in a single season across all competitions. Messi recorded 48 hat-tricks with Barcelona.

All the while, he dazzled fans in La Liga. As a long-haired 19-year-old, Messi weaved through a baffled Getafe defense in among the most memorable goals since Maradona's epic score against England in the 1986 World Cup after the "hand of God" goal.

ESPN cited sources that Messi has a two-year agreement to join Paris Saint-Germain, a club where he would join former Barcelona teammate Neymar, and Argentina teammate Angel Di Maria.

Messi admitted that a move to PSG is a "possibility."

“I have not agreed anything with anyone. I have got different clubs interested. Nothing is definitive, but clearly we are talking to them," he said.