Laporta warns: Elect me, or Messi leaves Barcelona
Joan Laporta has warned that he is the only presidential candidate who can convince Lionel Messi to stay at the club this summer.
The Argentine is currently unhappy at the Camp Nou due to the underperforming team on the pitch, as well as the direction the club is heading off it.
His contract expires this summer, with FootballTransfers previously revealing that Paris Saint-Germain had informed merchandise vendors within the French capital to prepare for Messi’s arrival.
Manchester City, too, are reportedly interested in bringing him to the Premier League.
With Messi looking likely to leave, Laporta says he is the man to convince him to remain with the Blaugrana as he and the player have a prior relationship.
“I have a great relationship with Leo and he will consider whatever proposal I make,” said Laporta during a debate between candidates this week, as reported by Marca.
“If I don’t win, I am sure that Leo will not stay at Barcelona.
“Messi will weight up the offer we make him,” he added.
“I’m convinced that if the other candidates win, Messi will not remain at Barcelona.”
Will Messi stay at Barcelona?
Whether Messi wishes to remain at the Camp Nou or not, the club might not actually be able to afford to retain him going forward, as it is currently crippled financially due to the ongoing pandemic and years of ill-advised spending in the transfer market.
Barcelona currently have debts in excess of €1.2 billion and have been forced again this week to undertake cost-cutting measures in order to balance the books.