Currently, players' wage bill occupies 63% of the institution’s budget. The football break, owing to the ongoing pandemic crisis, has heavily damaged the club’s economic means, in spite of the players’ 70% pay cut. These high salaries will dramatically influence Barça’s transfer policy in the upcoming windows. In order to comply with La Liga’s rules, Barcelona is expected to reduce its wage bill by a whopping 200 Million Euros to make room for Messi’s renewed contract as well. Barcelona president Joan Laporta has reassured the fans that Messi will sign new terms at Camp Nou but Javier Tebas said the club must ensure that they remain within the imposed salary cap applicable for La Liga clubs.
FC Barcelona are currently in debt amounting to €1.2 billion (£1.1b/$1.5b), which is affecting La Liga club’s efforts for negotiating new contracts and getting fresh faces on board. Back in 2019, La Liga giants had a salary limit of €671m (£577m/$796m). In March 2021, due to the currently ongoing COVID -19 induced pandemic, that figure dropped to €348m (£299m/$413m) under the tenure of former president Josep Bartomeu. Furthermore, FC Barcelona finished the season exceeding the prescribed wage limit, something that President Tebas will not allow going into the 2021-22 campaign, meaning player sales are of utmost importance from financial and regulatory perspective, with registrations of newly made signings being on the line as well.
The Argentine superstar Lionel Messi intends to remain at Camp Nou and is eager to sign a new two-year contract with the club. Barcelona, on the other hand, are desperate for their captain and talisman to commit to a new 2 year contract that would seem him add to the 21 years he has already spent in Spain with the Catalan giants, leading to the possibility of ending his club career at FC Barcelona on a high, entering into the rare club of footballers spending their playing career under a single club entirely. Club president Joan Laporta proclaimed "everything is on track" as he expressed his optimism that Messi, who has been linked with the footballing giants Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain, will be staying put and will be looking forward to strengthening fans' trust with the club on the pitch. Laporta, along with executives Ferran Reverter and Mateu Alemany, have been working on a two-year extension for Messi, although financial issues continue to stop significant progress being made with the talks. However, in the latest developments, La Liga have agreed to register Lionel Messi as a Barcelona player, on the condition of fulfilling serious guarantees being laid by the club which will involve sale/departures of multiple players as well as tying up players on new contracts with reduced wages. Indeed, Messi has a status as the highest-paid footballer in the world and the Catalans do not wish to lower his salary, at least over the next two seasons. Barcelona is also aware of the commercial revenue generated by Lionel Messi for the club which, probably, is much more than the club generates on its own and losing him would be a massive blow to FC Barcelona's balance sheet.