Just a week ago, it turned out that Lionel Messi had told his club, FC Barcelona, that he wanted to leave. The news thrived shortly after Barcelona’s humiliating 8-2 defeat over Bayern Munich in the Champions League. Since then, Messi has made up mind to quit the club that he played for almost his entire career.
In September 2019, Barcelona FC president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, stated that Messi would be able to leave for free before starting the 2020/21 season. Josep’s assertion was based on the clause in Messi’s deal, which allows him to leave free at the end of each season.
La Liga has sided with Barcelona
Lionel Messi’s dreams of leaving Barcelona on a free transfer were dashed by La Liga, saying that the deadline for exercising the clause has expired.
Despite the deadline for exercising the clause expired in June, Messi’s representatives still thinks that the club should honor the clause as the 2019/2020 season was extended until August due to coronavirus.
Official statement by La Liga. They side with Barcelona in Leo Messi contract battle: “Current deal is still valid and paying release clause for €700m is the only way out”. 🛑
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) August 30, 2020
La Liga, with their statement, also said that if any team wants Messi, then it will be only realistic after paying his €700 million ($834 million) release clause contained in Messi’s contract.
Is the legal battle imminent?
As per the Associated Press news agency, On August 25, 2020, Barcelona announced Messi’s intention to leave the club. The club also revealed that Messi had submitted a document expressing his desire to leave. However, the club still wanted their main man to end his career at Camp Nou – the club’s home stadium. With this, it seems like a legal battle between Barcelona and Lionel Messi is imminent.
Messi skipping training to force the transfer
Messi, as it stands, has a season leftover for the four-year extension he penned in 2017. As per the reports of various media outlets, Messi didn’t show up for the scheduled COVID-19 test on the first day of the Barcelona’s preseason under new coach Ronald Koeman. Messi is not in the mood to join the team until his future is certain. Additionally, Messi’s legal advisor tells him that rejoining the club would hurt the argument that he’s now unattached.
On the other hand, failing to appear in the training is an offense in every club and it is no exception for Barcelona. For missing his training on Monday, as a disciplinary action, Messi has to compensate a fine of between 4-7% of his monthly salary. Additionally, he even might face wages dock for two to 10 days. The penalty will grow if the situation persists and Messi continues to shirk his duties.
Manchester City is the current favorite to sign Lionel Messi
If Messi succeeds in securing his departure from Barcelona, Manchester City are currently the favorites to sign him. Pep Guardiola, former manager of Messi with Barcelona, is coaching the perennial English Premier League contender. However, it’s no surprise to learn that every elite team in the world has the interest to sign him.
Messi and Manchester city agreed on the personal terms of a five-year deal. However, his representatives are yet to reach the conclusion with Barcelona. To discuss the current situation, Barcelona officials are planning to meet Messi’s representatives next week. Besides, the club has only shown interest to extend Messi’s contract.
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