Will LaLiga’s financial limits allow Barcelona to sign Messi? Tebas talks Messi, Barcelona, Chelsea...
Tebas opens up on whether or not LaLiga’s financial limits will allow FC Barcelona to re-sign Lionel Messi.
With the news that Lionel Messi is set to leave PSG at the end of the season, the rumours of where he will end up next are already swirling at full speed. Miami and Saudi Arabia are destinations that have been mentioned for the World Cup winner, but the most romantic idea is a return to his former club, Barcelona.
LaLiga president Javier Tebas has spoken about the Argentine’s, who is suspended from PSG, possible transfer to the Catalan club, with many obstacles still to be defined and overcome. Barcelona’s financial situation has well documented over the past few years, yet that has not stopped the club’s ambitions in re-signing the player.
Tebas opened up on Barcelona’s situation, mentioning the famous ‘levers’ that Joan Laporta used last summer to sign players by selling off various parts of the club. “They have a strategy to sign more players. I don’t know if it’s right, but they managed to get the money in, they managed to sign players. We forced them to budget profits of €250 million.”
LaLiga tells Barcelona how much they have to spend
Tebas said that LaLiga “spoke to the club about the consequences of the [financial] documentation received. Until we see their plan, they are going to be excluded [from signing]. We don’t look at if they use the money they have to bring in Messi or Mbappé. We tell them they have a certain amount of money to sign players.”
“What’s clear is that to be able to sign players you have to have a budget balance, and for that Barcelona will have to work hard, to the 40% rule. If, within these limits, they are allowed to bring in seven players, they’ll bring in seven; if they can only bring one in, then they’ll only bring in one”, he said.
‘Barcelona are going to sell players for good incomings’
“The money spent is what it is”, Tebas continued, “I would worry if the money invested was higher and they couldn’t pay it. Real Madrid have gone two years without investment. Our locomotive, which is Real Madrid, haven’t done so as they think that their squad is good. I’m not worried as long as our teams are competitive. Madrid are in the Champions League semi-finals having beaten Chelsea; the Ballon d’Or is in Spain, as is Vinicius, an amazing player. We have sold less than other years and the best players are staying in Spain. There’s no need to spend for spending’s sake. Why do we want so many players if they’re just going to sit on the bench?
He also mentioned England, and how he believes that Chelsea will be the only team who will continue to spend crazy money: “We are going to sell more, but it’s not going to be enough to get to the figures of other seasons. Barcelona are going to sell players for good incomings.”
“Their plan is going that way. There isn’t going to be that investment fever in England since the government are going to put the brakes on. That’s my opinion. I feel that, apart from Chelsea, who are off partying, the other teams aren’t going to continue in the same way. The route the government is taking with UEFA’s new Financial Fair Play is going to make things more difficult.”
Will Barcelona play games abroad?
Finally, he mentioned the fact that Spanish football matches have been proposed outside of Spain, with Barcelona one of the teams who were mentioned, but Tebas was firm on the idea: “[Barcelona] will play friendlies [in the US]”, he said, “they’ll play LaLiga here. It seems good to me that they take advantage of the European dates to reduce the losses. By law it’s impossible for them to play in a foreign league. It’s impossible here and abroad. It’s not science fiction, it’s stupid.”