Barcelona have been rocked by a warning from La Liga that Lionel Messi’s registration may be denied unless there’s some serious changes at the club.
Messi’s contract at Barcelona is set to expire at the end of the month, when he’d be free to walk away and join another club, and he is yet to sign a new deal.
Reports in Spain have claimed that the club captain is expected to sign a new deal shortly but that might not actually mean he is able to play in the league next season.
La Liga president Javier Tebas has warned that unless the Catalan giants bring their wages down then they’ll be beyond the league salary cap and won’t be able to register Messi’s contract.
“Barcelona have exceeded their wage cap,”Tebas said on Monday, “I hope they can keep Messi, but to do so, they will have to make cuts elsewhere.”
|Messi was integral to Barcelona once again last season despite questions over his future persisting. Image: PA Images|
Tebas did give some hope to the situation, explaining, “The severity of the situation depends on the resources they are capable of generating.
“Barca have to restructure their debt. If they manage that, the situation won’t be serious.
“But they have taken their wage bill to the limit. And when football has coughed — or, better put, punctured a lung — they haven’t wanted to absorb that loss of income. They must take measures.”
Barcelona’s wages for the 2019/20 season totalled €671 million, before they were reduced due to the Covid 19 outbreak.
La Liga’s salary cap for the 2020/21 campaign was €382.7 million, meaning that Barca needed to be given leeway on their wages.
|Depay could have joined Barca last summer but has moved this summer instead. Image: PA Images|
Whilst they were able to compete with those levels, it did deny them the chance to sign Memphis Depay, something that has now happened this summer.
Ronald Koeman has also added Sergio Aguero and Eric Garcia to his squad from Manchester City, each not requiring a transfer fee.
Barca didn’t win any silverware in the 2019/20 season, the first time that had happened since 2008, but did win the Copa del Rey last season.
However that’s not the only trophy they won, with Tebas also giving them the award for biggest losses.
“Of the €700m losses [across La Liga], half of it is for Barcelona,” the league chief added, “There are other big clubs that have made a bigger effort to avoid it. Real Madrid have made a commendable effort to ensure their losses aren’t the same as Barca, who take the trophy for losses.”
Featured Image Credit: PA