Shomporko Desk:-Barcelona will choose a new coach in the coming days, and it may have a new president next year.
The club is likewise encouraging “wide-ranging” and “profound” structural changes after one of its most humiliating defeats ever – the 8-2 loss to Bayern Munich in the quarterfinals of the Champions League on Friday.
The one big question that remains is whether it will be able to keep Lionel Messi.
The team’s greatest star for over 10 years has an agreement with Barcelona until 2021, however, he hasn’t been concealing his disappointment with the club.
Messi has been more straightforward than ever this season, discussing the team’s issues and highlighting helpless choices by club directors. Despite the fact that he has never truly implied about leaving, his ongoing activities have raised questions about his future.
Spanish media has reported that negotiations to extend Messi’s contract beyond next June have been on hold since the problems at the club escalated. One Brazilian outlet, Esporte Interativo, said Messi actually wants to leave now instead of waiting until next year.
Rumours of clubs wanting to sign Messi started to surface immediately after the team’s loss to Bayern, with Pep Guardiola-coached Manchester City reportedly among the front-runners.
Many think the humiliation against Bayern may have been the tipping point for the Argentina great. Messi looked like he had already given up at halftime when images showed him sitting at one end of the bench looking down and biting his nails while waiting to go back on the field.
Messi and his teammates had to face furious Barcelona fans who confronted them and criticized the team at the club’s training centre after the squad returned from Portugal.
Messi has been unusually quiet since the loss in Lisbon and hasn’t made any public statements, unlike after the team lost the Spanish league title to Real Madrid a few weeks ago and he came out to openly talk to the media.
Earlier this season, Messi criticized Barcelona directors for some of their decisions. He was especially upset with sports director Eric Abidal after he criticized players’ efforts amid a series of poor results. He had also said that he didn’t think Barcelona would succeed in the Champions League the way things were at the club.
The club is also facing a difficult financial situation because of the coronavirus pandemic, which could make it harder to negotiate with Messi. Still, Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu has always said he expects Messi to finish his career at the club, and that Messi wants the same.
The result of next year’s presidential elections will likely play a crucial role in Messi’s decision, and it will also be important whether he is happy with the work of the team’s new coach.
Photo credit: AP Photo/Manu Fernandez
News source: The Associated Press