Joan Laporta, the Barcelona president, has confirmed on Monday that the club will make every effort to bring Lionel Messi back to the team. Messi is set to leave Paris Saint-Germain in the summer when his contract expires and is wanted by his former club despite Saudi Arabia showing strong interest in the player.
Messi has had two underwhelming seasons in Paris following his previous successful stint in Barcelona, where he won four Champions League and 10 La Liga titles. Follow your favourite La Liga team with attractive football betting odds from NextBet.
Laporta admitted that he has already spoken with Messi in an effort to rebuild the relationship between them, which was damaged when he left in 2021. “I have spoken to Leo to somehow redirect a situation that occurred, in which I had to put the club ahead of everything, even him, who is the best player in the world,” said Laporta. The conversation was a friendly one and Laporta congratulated him on the World Cup.
After Barcelona won 4-2 at Espanyol to clinch La Liga, Laporta made the statement on Twitch that the club will “do everything possible” to sign Messi. However, speaking on TV3, Laporta was more cautious. “He is a Paris Saint-Germain player, and what we will do is improve the team in all areas,” Laporta said. “I think it would do me a disservice to talk about these questions about Leo because he belongs to a team like Paris Saint-Germain, and we have to wait until the end of the season, until it is over and then we can talk more calmly about this.”
Last week, sources close to negotiations revealed that it was a “done deal” that Messi would move to Saudi Arabia next season. However, Laporta said that despite the financial incentives offered in the Middle East, which was reported at $400 million a year, Barcelona could still compete for Messi’s signature. “With all due respect to Saudi Arabia, Barca is Barca, and it is his home,” he said. “We can compete with everyone. History backs us, the feelings are too strong, we have 400 million fans around the world too.”
Barcelona still needs to make over 200 million euros in savings or new income to be able to operate without restrictions under La Liga financial fair play rules. Nonetheless, Laporta remains optimistic about the future of the club, and he has made it clear that they will do their best to bring Messi back. “We will work hard to bring the club back to where it deserves to be,” he added. Follow all the latest updates from the La Liga only on NextBet Sports.