Barcelona president Joan Laporta expected Argentine star to play for free

Lionel Messi-Barcelona

Laporta expected Messi to play for free

Former Barcelona player Lionel Messi left the club earlier on in the summer after the Spanish giants failed to agree on a new deal with him.

According to Sky Sports, Barcelona were unable to agree on an extension with the Argentine international because of La Liga’s salary cap.

Now club president Joan Laporta has revealed that he was hoping Lionel Messi would stay at the Catalan club and play for free instead of completing a free transfer to Paris Saint-Germain.

Messi has been an exceptional servant for Barcelona having come through their Academy but it is unrealistic to expect a player to play for free especially when Barcelona’s financial crisis has been their own doing through years of financial mismanagement.

Laporta said to RAC1 via Sky Sports: “There came a time when both parties saw that it would not be possible. There was disappointment on both sides.

“He wanted to stay but they also had a lot of pressure because of the offer they had. I hoped Messi would do a U-turn and he would say he would play for free.

“I would have liked that and I would have been all for it. It is my understanding La Liga would have accepted it. But we cannot ask a player of Messi’s stature to do this.”