Barcelona’s announcement that Lionel Messi will leave the club would have pushed Paris Saint-Germain to explore the possibility of signing the Argentine star.
Messi telephoned PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino, also Argentine, on Thursday, he informed The Associated Press a person with knowledge of the situation who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak about private conversations.
The source said that PSG is analyzing the potential income stream that hiring Messi would generate and how to pay him his astronomical salary and at the same time comply with the financial regulations of football.
Funded for a decade by a sovereign wealth fund from Qatar, PSG is one of the few clubs in the world with the resources to cover the salary of the 34-year-old star.
Messi I was going to charge 70 million euros (82 million dollars) annually with his new contract with Barcelona, which he never signed. On Thursday, the Barça club announced that, despite having reached an agreement with the Argentine for the new terms, the Spanish League intervened because he did not comply with the salary cap regulations.
This opens the possibility of a change in the decision to let Messi go if Barcelona manages to convince the League to give up. However, the entity’s debt exceeds 1,200 million euros (1,400 million dollars), a predicament that, after years of financial problems, was exacerbated by the lack of income as a result of the closure of the stadiums due to the pandemic.
While Barcelona’s accounts on social networks pay tribute to his career, Messi has not yet commented on his departure from the club to which he has been linked since he was 13 years old and with which he won 35 titles. With Messi, the ‘culé’ team won the Champions League four times, the Spanish League in 10, the Copa del Rey in seven and the Spanish Super Cup in eight.
If PSG sign Messi, the crash will meet his old teammate at Barça Neymar. It would be the most recent acquisition of the Parisian club without transfer payment after those of goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma, defender Sergio Ramos and midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum. As in the case of Messi, their contracts expired with Milan, Real Madrid and Liverpool, respectively.
Likewise, Manchester City, owned by the Abu Dhabi royal family, would have the desire and ties to sign Messi. But reuniting him with former Barça coach Pep Guardiola could be a complicated financial operation, as the reigning English Premier League champions have just broken the British transfer record by paying 100 million pounds ($ 140 million) for Jack Grealish.
With information from AP