Saturday, September 18, 2021

Messi leaves Barcelona after club failure to strike a new contract agreement

After being unable to strike a deal on a contract renewal before his previous Barcelona contract expired on June 30, the six-time Ballon d'Or winner has been a free agent since July 1

Lionel Messi is set to leave Barcelona after the club was unable to execute a contract renewal with the star because of “future financing hurdles.”

After being unable to strike a deal on a contract renewal before his previous Barcelona contract expired on June 30, the six-time Ballon d’Or winner has been a free agent since July 1.

The 34-year-old, on the other hand, was reportedly set to sign a new five-year contract with the Catalan club, which would have seen his salary reduced by half.

According to an official statement which was released by Barcelona, it reads

Despite FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi having reached an agreement and the clear intention of both parties to sign a new contract today, this cannot happen because of financial and structural obstacles (Spanish Liga regulations).

As a result of this situation, Messi shall not be staying on at FC Barcelona.

Both parties deeply regret that the wishes of the player and the club will ultimately not be fulfilled.

FC Barcelona wholeheartedly expresses its gratitude to the player for his contribution to the aggrandizement of the club and wishes him all the very best for the future in his personal and professional life.

Prior to the news of Messi leaving Barcelona, the club, however, has been discussing with vice-captains Gerard Pique, Sergio Busquets, and Sergi Roberto about decreasing their pay by 40% in exchange for contract extensions in order to ensure compliance with La Liga’s financial fair play standards for the upcoming season.

They’ve also attempted to sell a number of high-paid players, including Antoine Griezmann, Ousmane Dembele, Philippe Coutinho, Samuel Umtiti, and Martin Braithwaite, but have struggled to find a buyer for any of them.

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