Why did Barcelona President think Messi would Play for Free?

Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona and president Joan Laporta. (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona and president Joan Laporta. (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /

Lionel Messi is now officially a Paris Saint-Germain player and has even scored his first goal for the club. However, his exit from Barcelona is still a hot topic and fans of the club and player are still blaming either the League president or the club president. Javier Tebas and Joan Laporta have been going back and forth, blaming each other for the loss of the player. It is not just a loss for Barca but for the league as well, as the player used to bring in a lot of viewership from neutral fans who just wanted to see Messi.

Barcelona obviously wanted to keep the best player in the world; however, financial troubles and pressure from La Liga ultimately made sure that the player would end his 20 years run with the club. The decision came as quite a surprise especially since Messi agreed upon a pay cut and Laporta seemed so confident in his negotiation abilities. However, the deal did not go through and Messi had to leave the club due to La Liga regulations.

The Barca President in a recent interview with RAC1 has said that he hoped that Lionel Messi would play for free for a while. This is absolutely ridiculous to hear and although it would be temporary, to even fathom a player of Messi’s status playing for free is mind-boggling. In the interview he said,

"“There came a time when both parties saw that it would not be possible. There was disappointment on both sides,”“I hoped Messi would do a U-turn and he would say he would play for free.“I would have liked that and I would have been all for it. It is my understanding that La Liga would have accepted it. But we cannot ask a player of Messi’s stature to do this.”"

Yes, Barcelona is Messi’s home and yes, the player did want to stay with the club but at the end of the day, Messi also needs to provide for his family. The amount that he made from Barca was not a small amount, and losing that completely would mean a huge change in his family’s routine. To hope that Messi would have played for free was a wishful thought and Laporta should have instead tried to negotiate more thoroughly with Tebas.

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Laporta has to understand that the club is bigger than any player and begging Messi to play for free would not only be an insult to the player but also to the club. The Argentine legend will definitely come back to the Camp Nou one day but for now, the Catalans must embrace the future and let go of the past.