La Liga president Javier Tebas has already seen two of the biggest names in the world, Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo leave Spain for PSG and Juventus respectively, and the last thing he wants it to see is Lionel Messi playing in another league next season.
So it was not a surprise to see La Liga back Barcelona in the Messi contract dispute, releasing this statement on their website:
“In relation to the different interpretations (some of them contradictory to each other) published in recent days in different media, related to the contractual situation of the player Lionel Messi with Barcelona, La Liga considers it convenient to clarify [matters].
“The contract is currently in force and has a ‘termination clause’ applicable to the event that Lionel Messi decides to force the early unilateral termination of the contract.
“In compliance with the applicable regulations, and following the corresponding procedure in these cases, La Liga will not carry out the process for the player to be removed from the federation if they have not previously paid the amount of said clause.”
When Messi signed his latest contract, Barcelona agreed to a clause that would allow their talisman to leave for free at the end of any season. While many thought that deadline passed in June, Messi believes that it had been extended due to the prolonged 2019/20 season.
Messi’s transfer request caught the Barcelona board unprepared.
Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu is strongly disliked by players and fans and he stubbornly refuses to meet with Messi unless it is to discuss a new contract.
Messi put more pressure on the club on Sunday when he failed to attend the PCR tests at Barcelona, a clear signal of his desire to leave the club and an attempt.