In just over a month’s time, Barcelona supporters will know who their new president is, and how they will lead the club through what is set to be the most tumultuous period in its history.
The club members need to get their selection exactly right on January 24 for a number of reasons, not least because Lionel Messi’s future could depend on it.
The Argentinian is, apparently, willing to wait until after the elections before making a decision on whether to stay at the club or not.
He can walk away for free in the summer, unless the new president can convince him otherwise. Joan Laporta isn’t in a position to do that yet, but believes he’s earned Messi’s trust.
Should he win, Barcelona could end up being indebted to him because of the close bond he has with the club captain.
“We will use all our ability to ensure Leo continues,” he said to Sport.
“I am convinced he’s wanting the new president of the club to make him an offer.
“He knows if I promise him a competitive team, I will keep my word. I have earned his trust. He told me himself that I have always delivered.
“But I am not in a position yet to be able to do so and to make him a proposal.
“Like Pele, Leo has the chance to spend his entire career with one team. And that would be really nice.
“We have to make an attractive proposal in all senses. I am sure that other clubs can offer more financially.”
After placing an enormous campaign banner outside of Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu ground earlier this week per MARCA, this latest soundbite really does put the pressure on Laporta’s presidential rivals.