Barcelona still have an important issue to sort out with Lionel Messi after their icon’s shock exit this summer, as Sport report that they owe the all-time great €52m as part of a deferred salary deal.
Sport insist that the fee is not in relation to a loyalty bonus, despite speculation, instead it’s in regards to the figure owed to Messi after Barcelona renegotiated player contracts when the pandemic struck.
Messi was forced to leave the Blaugrana this summer, as the cash-strapped club could not re-sign the 34-year-old to a new contract due to La Liga regulations, as they noted in their initial farewell statement.
The near-unstoppable forward has now moved to Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer, becoming the crown jewel in a diamond set of free agents that the French outfit have landed this summer.
Sport report that Barcelona are currently negotiating the terms of how they will pay the €52m to Messi, with lawyers working on the matter for both parties as the club intend to pay it off by the end of 2022.
Salary deferrals were clearly necessary for Barcelona as they’ve been battling on the financial front since Covid-19 swept, with the pandemic amplifying the impact of reckless spending in recent years.
So it seems that part of Messi will still be on Barcelona’s accounting books for the time being, fans will be hoping that the club can reach an agreement with their former superstar that doesn’t thrust them into an even worse financial spot.
It will be interesting to see how Ronald Koeman’s side recover from the massive exit of Messi, the rebuild may well have to go on a little longer than the hierarchy hoped – a prolonged spell of mediocrity in La Liga and the Champions League is something else that isn’t likely to be good for the club’s finances.