Lionel Messi is now in another row with the Barcelona board, with the Argentine superstar criticising the club’s decision to ask all the players to take temporary wage cuts to help them tide over the financial trouble caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to Spanish newspaper El Mundo, the other club captains Sergi Roberto, Gerard Pique and Sergio Busquets have co-signed Messi’s letter to the Barcelona board, which has criticised their decision.
The report claims that the letter states the players’ belief that the way the board has acted in forcing the players to take salary reductions has been “embarrassing”.
However, El Mundo has also reported that there isn’t unanimous agreement within the Barcelona squad, with several players already having signed new contracts and agreeing to the temporary salary cuts.
Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Frenkie de Jong and Clement Lenglet have already signed new deals, and agreed to the wage cuts. Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho are also in talks, and are set to sign new deals.
There are also reports that Gerard Pique himself is set to sign a new deal imminently.
Lionel Messi and Barcelona board on collision course again
Lionel Messi continues to be agonised by the Barcelona board
This disagreement is the latest in a series of attacks from Messi on the Barcelona board. In August, the Argentine threatened to leave the club by unilaterally pulling the trigger on his contract, but Barcelona argued that the clause had already expired.
After agreeing to stay on at the club, Messi also attacked the Barcelona board over their treatment of Luis Suarez, before the Uruguayan striker left the club to join Atletico Madrid.
In an Instagram post, Messi had written that Suarez deserved the farewell of a Barcelona legend instead of being forced out of the club. Messi had also said that nothing about the way Barcelona were being run was surprising to him anymore.
In an interview to Sport at the end of September, Messi had said that he was looking forward to putting an end to his rows with the board, and that everyone had to move forward, united. `
However, with this latest development coming just days before Barcelona take on their great rivals Real Madrid in El Clasico, it is not the ideal preparation for the club.
Barcelona lost 1-0 to Getafe in La Liga last week, but bounced back with a 5-1 win over Ferencvaros in the Champions League on Tuesday night, with a Messi penalty opening the scoring.