clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Will Lionel Messi stay at Barcelona beyond this season?

New, comments

The captain still loves the club

FBL-EUR-C1-BARCELONA-BAYERN MUNICH Photo by MANU FERNANDEZ/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

At least everything is now out in the open.

There is no doubting Leo Messi’s depth of feeling towards the board of the club after his recent interview but, importantly, he remains at the Camp Nou.

Despite apparently trying to get away for the best part of a year, he will still be a Barcelona player until the end of the 2020/21 campaign.

For that we should perhaps thank Josep Maria Bartomeu.

It’s probably the only thing we should thank him for, but by playing hardball and keeping the No.10 in situ, it opens up the possibility of Messi staying beyond the forthcoming season.

FBL-EUR-C1-BARCELONA-BAYERN MUNICH Photo by RAFAEL MARCHANTE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Ostensibly, the major reason why Messi has been unhappy has been the lack of a ‘sporting project’ under Bartomeu’s watch.

He said it himself during his interview, that they are a board who just plug holes. However, they’re also a board that will be gone within the year and Messi can’t lose sight of that.

Yes, he will be another year further along in his career, and with potentially only another two seasons left at the highest level, but he would have a chance of restoring the Blaugranes back to their former glories if the right candidate is voted in.

Joan Laporta appears keen to get the band back together, but he is hindered by how his own presidency ended, with many locals still believing that he can’t be trusted.

As long as the ‘continuity’ candidate weren’t elected - so there would be another term of the same as we’ve had since 2015 - then Victor Font has to be the front runner.

FC Barcelona v Leganes - Copa del Rey: Round of 16 Photo by Eric Alonso/MB Media/Getty Images

Whilst this column will not advocate for any one candidate above any other, it’s clear that Font has done his homework.

His plans are well known, he has fully briefed the right people in the locale, and everything has been costed and double-checked.

If any culers were in doubt as to how suitable Font might be for the position, then having Xavi as his manager, Carles Puyol alongside and Jordi Cruyff as his sporting director should allay any fears.

All three are Barcelonisme personified, and would be well placed to convince Messi to lead their own sporting project and see out the final years of his career at the Camp Nou, as it always should’ve been.

Of course, there’s plenty of time between now and the elections for anything to happen to derail the notion of Messi staying, but there is hope.

After the season Barca have just had, I’d contend that most of us will take that.