The Catalan giants announced in a shock statement on Thursday that Messi will not be extending his 21-year successful stay at Camp Nou due to the club’s dire financial situation in accordance to LaLiga rules and Gerard Pique who is also one of the important player of the team has put Lionel Messi’s imminent departure from the club down to the former board’s poor running of the club.

Despite the Argentina international accepted 50 percent pay cut of his salary, Barcelona were unable to honour the new contract agreed with him due to LaLiga’s salary cap limit.
The Catalonia club side are estimated to be in around €1.2billion of debt which was a hangover from the previous club president, Josep Maria Bartomeu regime which spanned from 2014 until 2020 when he was ousted.

Following Barca’s 3-0 win over Juventus in Sunday’s Joan Gamper Trophy clash at Estadi Johan Cruyff, Pique said “This has not been one of the best days for us. We have lost the best of all time, We knew this day would arrive, but the team was still touched, especially those of us who spent many years sharing a dressing room with him.”

Messi’s name was chanted throughout the prestigious friendly with Juve, with goals from Memphis Depay, Martin Braithwaite, and Riqui Puig earning Barca a routine victory.
Ronald Koeman said “It is normal that when a player like Messi leaves it will be hard for everyone, but we have to turn the page because we cannot change this situation,”

“You have to play well and win, work more. Others can occupy that position and have a leading role. But we will no longer have Leo. We have to turn the page and be hopeful.”
“You have to play well and win, work more. Others can occupy that position and have a leading role. But we will no longer have Leo. We have to turn the page and be hopeful.”
That was the coach statement before the game about an exciting future despite the loss of Messi and reiterated after the victory that it is important his side put the saga behind them.

Aguero was ruled out of Barca’s final pre-season outing with a calf problem though it learnt that the Argentina international reportedly looking to leave Camp Nou before kicking a ball but Koeman denied the suggestions that the striker wants to terminate the contract signed just last month even it is realistic that Messi’s departure could have a knock-on impact for Koeman.
“That is not true,” Koeman said. “He has signed and is excited. It is a pity that he was injured this morning and we have to wait for his recovery. It happened in training. We know that when he is fit, he can contribute a lot.”

Among a number of positives on the field for Koeman during pre-season has been the form of new signing Depay, who took just three minutes to open the scoring against Juve and Netherlands international has already got in three goals in four matches for Barcelona since his arrival on a free transfer from Lyon, emphasizing Koeman’s point of there being life after Messi.

“Memphis showed again today that he can be very effective,” Koeman said. “We know we must score more and the squad must improve.
“The best in the world will be missed, but you have to accept it. We are not living in the past. There is a future for this team.
“This result against Juventus was very good and achieved by playing some good football. We have taken another step and will only get better when other players return.”
Pique has spent the last 13 years playing alongside Messi and believes the situation could have been avoided.

Messi scored 672 times in 778 appearances for the LaLiga side, is now expected to complete a free transfer to Paris Saint-Germain.



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