Joan Laporta‘s primary objective in the short term at Barcelona is Lionel Messi‘s contract. A lot of things are currently standing in the way of finalising the No.10’s renewal, and the president and Mateu Alemany are working hard to reduce the salary bill to accommodate Messi.
Francisco Trincao is on his way from the Camp Nou to Wolverhampton Wanderers as the Catalans continue to seek ways to slash their expenses, while Junior Firpo‘s move to Leeds United is also expected to be confirmed for around 15 million euros.
Those two are far from the most concerning salaries on the club’s books though. Barcelona have already tried to get Samuel Umtiti and Miralem Pjanic to agree to terminating their contracts – as they’re paid between 16 million and 18m euros – but both have rejected the offer. They are still expected to leave this summer though, which would free up around 35 million euros for the season to come.
It doesn’t stop there, either. In order to make room for Messi and his new – and reduced – contract, more people will have to be moved on. One of those is likely to be Philippe Coutinho.
The Brazilian’s exit is key and would free up around 50 million euros, but Barcelona have to find a buyer or he’ll be departing, once more, on loan.
There are many more players who could still leave this summer, but with less of a market. Martin Braithwaite, Carles Alena and Clement Lenglet could also be sold, as could Antoine Griezmann. The latter earns 40 million euros gross a year, and that will only rise after this coming season.
Barcelona know they have to make room for Messi, but it’s not proving to be easy.