Opinion: Lionel Messi remains integral to Barcelona but his pay is crippling the club

The worst 12 months in Barcelona’s history shows no signs of abating, after it was revealed just how much money they still owe to other clubs for transfers, and also how much financial difficult they’re in.

Former president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, has a lot to answer for but has been strangely quiet since being ousted from the position late last year.

At the beginning of the current campaign, Bartomeu dug his heels in to stop Lionel Messi from leaving the club after the latter had sent a burofax denoting his intentions.

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However, in hindsight, that may not have been the best course of action.

Although the Argentinian, Barca’s best-ever player and their current captain, is still integral to everything they do on a football pitch, his astronomical wages are crippling the club.

Whilst the finger of blame can’t really be pointed at him, because after all he doesn’t write the cheques, the fact is if Barca can rid themselves of his salary, they’d make a significant dent in the numbers as they stand at the moment.

If any club is bigger than one player, as we are always led to believe, and given that the future of Barca as we know it is at stake, the decision to allow Messi to move on won’t be the most popular, far from it in fact, but it might be the most sensible.

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