Lionel Messi leaves Barcelona live updates: Breaking news as PSG reflect on deal


Barcelona president Joan Laporta blamed La Liga’s financial fair play rules for the club’s inability to sign a new contract with Lionel Messi and insisted negotiations with the Argentine were ‘over “.

Barcelona said on Thursday that Messi would not stay at the club “due to financial and structural obstacles”.

Messi, 34, has been a free agent since July 1, when his contract with the club expired.

“The results of the audit of our finances are much worse than we expected, based on official figures,” Laporta said at a press conference on Friday. “This means the losses are much higher than expected and the debt is also much higher, which means that with the current contracts we have no margin.

“The deal with Leo Messi had some risks, and we were prepared to take them, but when we saw the club’s situation through this audit, we simply had no margin after the previous disastrous board.

“I don’t want to generate false hope. It is true that the player also has other offers, as we heard during the negotiations. There is also a deadline for us, La Liga starts soon. The FFP is also clear and the player cannot stay in this (limbo) situation.

Laporta also reiterated that negotiations with Messi have come to an end and that the greatest player in Barcelona history is leaving the club.

“The negotiation (with Messi) is over,” he added. “La Liga are not flexible with their salary limit, they would only do so if we mortgaged the broadcast rights of this club for half a century.”

Laporta also said that La Liga have indicated that Messi could be registered in the league’s financial rules if Barcelona accept CVC’s investment. La Liga this week struck a € 2.7bn (£ 2.3bn) deal with CVC that could see for the first time private capital involved in running one of the biggest leagues in the world. European football.

He said: “La Liga have said they would have accepted Messi into their FFP if we accepted the operation they are performing (CVC). But we couldn’t give up part of our broadcasting rights over a long period of time. We did not want to mortgage the future of the club. The club must be above the players, the presidents, everyone.


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