FC Barcelona president, Joan Laporta, has issued a call for calm outside the gates of the offices at Camp Nou. Talking before the cameras of various media entities, he said that "Everything's on track" with regards to Leo Messi's contract renewal. Despite the attempts of PSG and Manchester City to acquire the services of the Argentina captain, the club's president has reiterated that he feels a breakthrough will be made in the coming days.
The Argentina star, who is currently representing his country in the Copa América, has been a free agent since 30 June. After attempting to leave the club last summer, the change in presidency and revised sporting project appear to have convinced the striker to remain in the Catalan capital, who is now willing to stay at Barça for a further two years.
The club's wage bill is the only remaining obstacle, with both club and player happy to continue their association for a further two years. The club has already announced the departures of Matheus Fernandes and Francisco Trincao to help raise funds for Messi's renewal, and they also hope to confirm the sale of Junior Firpo in the coming hours.
Leo Messi - Joan Laporta: a strong relationship
The change in presidency, with Joan Laporta returning to the club to replace the outgoing Josep Maria Bartomeu, was key in getting Messi to change his mind. The good relationship that they shared during Laporta's first spell at the club was enough to get the club captain to do a full 180 on his decision, who seemed like he already had one foot out the door just a few months ago.
After winning the Copa del Rey last season and with Ronald Koeman confirmed to stay on as coach for another year, Barça will begin preparations for the 2021/22 season with a series of medical exams on 9 and 10 July. International players who are participating in the European Championships and the Copa América, such as Leo Messi himself, are due to join the squad in a few weeks. Messi's Argentina are set to play against Colombia in the early hours of Wednesday morning for a place in the final of the Copa América.