With Joan Laporta’s official inauguration as the president of Barcelona out of the way, it’s time for the new board to tackle their biggest and most immediate challenges, head-on.
While most of them have to do with the renewals of certain players and identifying the ones that can be offloaded in the coming summer, the bigger picture for Laporta’s crew is to make the club as a whole financially sustainable, once again.
Something that will go a long way in achieving that is locking down the club captain, Lionel Messi for as long as possible, and as per the latest reports by ESPN, Laporta is waiting for the perfect moment to make a formal offer to the Argentine.
From branding to merchandise, to broadcasting deals and match revenues, there are a lot of factors involved when it comes to keeping a football club, economically stable. While Messi’s exploits on the pitch are usually the talk of the town, it’s often underestimated what the Argentine brings to the table off it.
Barcelona closed the 2020-21 season with 855 million euros in revenue which was far from the 1.047 billion euros set as the budget, a circumstance that led the club to endure final losses of 97 million euros after tax.
Given the ongoing pandemic and the crisis at the Camp Nou still being latent, losing Messi would further take a huge chunk out of that incoming revenue stream and that is exactly what the Catalans can’t afford at the moment.
Laporta being aware of this fact wants to audit the current economic situation of the club so as to devise a plan of action that will help him retain Messi in a manner that can be feasible for both sides.
Messi’s entourage has maintained that the decision about his continuity will be taken at the end of the season. In fact, his father-agent, Jorge Messi is still believed to be in Argentina, and contrary to recent reports, there is no time frame set for him to arrive in Barcelona or even Europe for that matter.
According to sources, Messi wants to avoid another saga like last summer because one of the things that he values the most is discretion. The Barcelona captain’s sole focus at the moment is to help Koeman’s team achieve their objectives and he has continued his scintillating form this year in the recent 6-1 drubbing of Real Sociedad.
However, Laporta made it clear during his investiture that he will try his best to convince Messi to extend his stay at Camp Nou. As the footballing world awaits to know what is next for the best player in the game, Cules would hope that the charismatic president can produce an offer to back his promises.