Barcelona President Admits He Wanted Lionel Messi To “Play for Free” Instead of PSG Move

Published 10/08/2021, 1:57 PM EDT


While Barcelona’s off-field troubles have been well known for the past few years, their sporting troubles on the pitch this season have been hard to grasp for many. Ever since Lionel Messi left Barcelona, they have struggled in the league as well as in Europe.

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The Argentinian’s departure from his club for PSG certainly broke the hearts of many. After all, it was a forced separation that was a result of masterful financial mismanagement.

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Lionel Messi had a lot of pressure because of the PSG offer

In a recent interview with Spanish publication RAC 1 [via Daily Post], Barcelona president Joan Laporta spoke in-depth about Messi’s transfer to PSG. He revealed how Messi and Barcelona had known before his departure that PSG had made a powerful bid for him. He also admitted that the bid was influential enough to pressurize Messi’s decision-making.

With Messi, I do not get angry because I appreciate him. I know he had a huge desire to stay, but also a lot of pressure because of the offer he had,said Laporta.

“Everything indicates that he already had the offer from PSG. Everyone knew that he had a very powerful offer. We knew from Messi that they had a very good offer.”

“I think I’m doing the best for Barca” – Barcelona President

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He then revealed how making Messi stay was equivalent to putting the existence of the club at risk. “At no time do I think of going backward. I think I’m doing the best for Barca. Nobody can put the institution at risk.”

Lastly, like every Culer, he did hope that Messi would play for free but even he admits that is just wishful thinking. “I did hope that at the last minute Messi would say that he would play for free. I would have liked that and he would have convinced me. I understand that the league would have accepted it. But we cannot ask that of a player of his level.”

Soccer Football – Lionel Messi holds an FC Barcelona press conference – 1899 Auditorium, Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain – August 8, 2021 Lionel Messi during the press conference REUTERS/Albert Gea

It’s still uncomfortable watching Messi wearing a shirt other than Barca’s. The greatest player of all time became synonymous with the club, and vice versa. However, Barca need to move on from the heartbreak and find their form on the pitch again as soon as possible.

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Suresh Menon

138 articles

Suresh Menon is a Football and NFL writer at Essentially Sports. He is currently pursuing BMM from St Xaviers College with his specialization in Advertising. Juventus is his favorite football club and he one day plans to go to Italy and watch a Juve match live.

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