A shocking report from French outlet L’Eqiupe has claimed that Lionel Messi’s new contract at Paris Saint Germain is growing more and more unlikely with each passing day as PSG look to avoid financial fair play sanctions, opening the door to a potential Barcelona return.
The Argentine made the switch from Camp Nou to the Parc des Princes in dramatic fashion in the summer of 2021, and has impressed this season after a poor first campaign.
Messi, whose Argentina side won the World Cup on penalties in November, has scored 13 times and grabbed a further 13 assists in 23 Ligue 1 outings, but was largely anonymous as PSG crashed out of the Champions League against Bayern Munich in the last 16 last month.
It led to increased speculation about his future, with PSG ultras planning a protest against any new potential deal the following Ligue 1 match and Messi out of contract this summer in the French capital.
And, as per French outlet L’Equipe, ‘for the moment no agreement has been reached and, in the case of the Argentine, pessimism is growing stronger’ [about him penning a new deal.
It is more of a financial issue than anything else, however, as they report that Messi earns €3.375 million gross per month, something that even PSG cannot pay him that due to Financial Fair-Play.
Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Sergio Ramos are all on big-money deals in France, and adding an increased salary for Messi may finally tip the scales beyond what is legal.
The obvious summer destination for Messi is Barcelona, where he spent all but the last two years of his footballing career and is revered as a god.
But there are serious concerns about whether Barca would be able to afford his high wages. As of the beginning of March, La Liga President Javier Tebas confirmed that the club needed to sell, and sell lots, before they were active in the transfer window.
‘In the case of Barcelona, they have to drop spending on wages and transfers from £532m to £399m (€650m to €450m), so it’s a budget of minus £177m (€200m)’, he explained.
Another option could be to follow Cristiano Ronaldo to Saudi Arabia, with Al-Hilal thought to be keen on bringing the two greatest footballers of their generation face to face once more according to L’Equipe.