‘Lionel Messi has shown signs that he will stay at Barcelona’ said Joan Laporta in his victory speech moments after being elected the new Barcelona president. Laporta, who earlier served as the president between 2003 and 2010, won a resounding 54.28% of total votes while Victor Font came second with 29.99% of and Toni Freixa was third with 8.58%. Laporta is now tasked with leading the club out of an institutional and financial crisis. His first task though will be to get Messi to sign a new contract. Lionel Messi and Other Barcelona Players Cast Their Votes During Presidential Elections (See Pictures).
The Argentine, who made his Barcelona debut during Laporta’s first stint as the president, has just four months remaining in his current contract and has already been in talks with Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City over a possible move. His current deal, signed in 2017, is a reported 555 million Euros. With Barcelona’s debt rising over a billion, it will be interesting how they handle Messi’s contract while also keeping an eye on the account book. Sepp Blatter, Former FIFA President Was Surprised to See Lionel Messi Win Golden Ball Win at 2014 World Cup.
Laporta spoke about Messi arriving at Camp Nou to vote and said that suggested that the 33-year-old loves the club. “Seeing Lionel Messi coming to vote today, seeing him taking part, that is very telling,” Laporta said in his victory speech. “Twenty years ago a little boy called Leo Messi made his debut with Barca’s youth team. Seeing the best player in the world come out to vote today is a clear sign of what we keep saying. Leo loves Barca.
“The best player in the world loves Barca and I hope that is a sign that he will stay at Barcelona, which is what we all want,” Laporta added.
As many 51,765 eligible members voted in the election which was postponed from January to March due to the coronavirus pandemic. A total of 30, 184 people voted for Laporta trusting in him to bring the club out of the crisis. Barcelona’s first match under his watch will be the second leg of the last 16 clash against Paris Saint-Germain.
(The above story first appeared on Fresh Headline on Mar 08, 2021 01:07 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website freshheadline.com).