Blaugrana have accepted Lionel Messi’s decision to quit the club this summer but will not allow the forward to leave for less than £200m. Argentina international stunned the Catalan club’s board on Tuesday by handing in a transfer request and an emergency meeting was called to discuss the attacker’s future immediately.
Barca are understandably desperate to keep Lionel but with such a short turnaround before the new campaign, the Blaugrana can ill-afford to allow the situation to overshadow their preparations. As such, Blaugrana’s board have accepted Messi’s desire to quit the club but they will not sell for less than a world record price.
PSG broke the world transfer record in 2017 to sign Neymar from Barcelona for a fee of £200m. That agreement sent shockwaves around the football world but it was relatively straightforward in that the Brazilian superstar had a release clause that the Ligue 1 giants decided to activate.
Blaugrana before any deal that allows the 33-year-old centre-forward to leave Barcelona must trump Neymar’s departure and the Catalan giants want at least £200m to allow the attacker to leave.
Given the Argentine forward reportedly earns around £970,000-a-week in Blaugrana and is 33 years of age, it’s unlikely that any club in world football would foot the bill for the 33-year-old forward in the midst of a pandemic.
However, Lionel’s team believe they can exploit a loophole that would allow him to leave on a free transfer. The Argentine forward had the chance to do so earlier this summer but a clause in his deal expired without him informing Blaugrana that he wished to depart.