Messi, en una imagen de archivo

Who will negotiate Messi's contract renewal?

OPINION

@SPORT_Lmascaro

Lionel Messi has still not pronounced on his future beyond next summer. Despite the commitment and motivation he's showing in every game, the Barcelona forward remains silent for now. His deal expires at the end of the season and he is free to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with other clubs in January. Manchester City will try and sign him again and this time he is definitely available for free next summer... if he doesn't sign a contract renewal at Camp Nou, which looks complex at the moment.  

Messi's future is, logically, the main worry among Barça fans. And the objective of the next Barça president should be to negotiate with the best player in the world. And to convince him, with personal and football reasons (it's not a financial issue), to retire at the club. The problem is that Barcelona have no president. And it's unlikely they will have one in the coming months. Elections could be in January... if the pandemic allows. And that's too far away if they want to avoid losing Messi. 

Ruling out the most logical solution (that a new president is elected before Christmas), there are two alternatives: that the managing committee negotiates Messi's renewal or that all the candidates for the president united to offer Messi an exciting project. It would seem paradoxical that acting president of the managing committee Carles Tusquets achieves what Josep Maria Bartomeu could not. And the hypothesis that the presidential candidates unite to avoid Messi's departure seems a utopia, too. Some of them have tried to talk with the player's people, with little success so far... 

With that context, who will negotiate with Messi to stop him from leaving? Is Messi ready to wait until for the new president (whenever that will be) before deciding if he will sign for another club? Without Bartomeu, his big 'enemy,' everything should be easier. Or not... For now, the person speaking with Messi (and often) is Ronald Koeman. The Dutch coach responded to Quique Setien's attack on Tuesday and assured that Leo is not a difficult player. He said they speak every week about the team and the dressing room. Messi, as we can see, is not the 'ogre' some have wanted to paint him as...

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