Barcelona president Joan Laporta has come to the club at a time of extreme instability, tasked with reversing a mammoth financial crisis, clearing out the club and revamping the sporting project and also trying to convince talisman Lionel Messi to stay after the debacles of seasons gone by.
For the first time in 17 years, Messi is technically no longer a Barcelona player after his mega-contract expired at midnight on June 30th 2021. Now, Laporta is under more pressure than ever regarding the renewal, even though it seems almost imminent, all the while, dealing with the issue of the European Super League simultaneously.
The Barcelona president spoke to Onda Cero program El Transistor, opening up about the status of Messi’s renewal, the European Super League and developments about the club’s financial problems. Laporta was first asked about the elephant in the room, which is Messi’s renewal.
“We want Messi to stay and Leo wants to stay, everything is on track, we have the issue of fair play, we are in the process of finding the best solution for both parties,” began the 59-year old.
He then spoke about the challenges of returning as president of the club at a delicate time like this: “When I arrived in 2003, and as it was all new, we made a small revolution and everything went well. Now I am rejuvenating and people are very excited. The challenge is enormous because it is going to demand a lot of us and I like it because I am prepared.”
“We are in a very complicated economic situation; in the market there is no money, you have to remove and change things that’s why there’s the Super League,” Laporta said, venturing on to the topic of the ESL, regarding which La Liga president Javier Tebas had some stark comments.
“Javier Tebas has to be clear that the Super League will not affect the Spanish League; Barça will want to win the league every year. Sooner or later the English clubs will regret the decision they have taken to leave the Super League,” he added.