Lionel Messi now has a 'frosty' relationship with Barcelona after feeling 'betrayed' by Joan Laporta – SPORTbible
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The chances of Lionel Messi returning to Barcelona are now said to be “very remote”, according to a new report in Spain.
Messi is into the final year of his current deal with Paris Saint-Germain and could be free to negotiate a return to Barcelona in January, once he has entered the final six months of his contract at the Parc des Princes.
Earlier this week, reports in Spain suggested Messi was set to snub the offer of a contract extension in order to return to Barcelona for the start of next season.
It followed claims by Barcelona’s vice-president of economics, Eduard Romeu, that a contract offer for Messi was financially “possible” for the Catalan club.
But a return to the Nou Camp for Messi is by no means a certainty, according to Spanish publication Marca.
The Spanish publication claim that Messi now has a “frosty” relationship with his former club after feeling “betrayed” by club president Joan Laporta over his shock move to PSG in 2021.
Messi had agreed a new deal with Barcelona ahead of the 2021-22 season but was forced to leave once it became clear that the club was unable to honour the agreement due to “financial and structural obstacles”.
Marca claim that nobody from Barcelona has contacted Messi about a possible return to the Nou Camp next season.
He is also said to be unhappy that the club’s directors have spoken about him without making official contact.
It is also claimed that for Messi to return to Barcelona “some people from the dressing room and the offices would have to leave the club first”.
Messi is also expected to demand a significant wage to rejoin Barcelona, which could prove problematic for the cash-strapped club.
The La Liga side were forced to sell off major assets this summer in order to fund transfers, while they would likely have to slash their wage bill to accommodate Messi.
Meanwhile, another report also claims that Barcelona still owe Messi wages from his time with the club.
The former Barcelona captain was one of several players who agreed wage deferrals during the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, when Josep Maria Bartomeu was still president.
Spanish journalist Sique Rodriguez claims Barcelona still owe the Argentina international “a lot of money”, with reports last year estimating the forward was owed more than €50m (£44m) in unpaid wages at the time of his departure from the Nou Camp.
Messi, meanwhile, has played down the chances of him leaving PSG at the end of the season, insisting he is currently happy in the French capital.
“I feel good, I feel different from last year. I knew it was going to be like this,” said Messi.
“I’m more comfortable with the club, the dressing room, my teammates, the game.
“I feel very good again, so I’m starting to enjoy it again.”
Lionel Messi, Argentina, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Transfers, Football