sport news Barcelona president Joan Laporta claims he hoped Lionel Messi 'would play for ...

sport news Barcelona president Joan Laporta claims he hoped Lionel Messi 'would play for ...
sport news Barcelona president Joan Laporta claims he hoped Lionel Messi 'would play for ...
Barcelona president Joan Laporta reveals he hoped Lionel Messi 'would play for FREE' and shun PSG's 'very powerful' offer... as he claims club tried to re-sign Neymar in the summer Barcelona could not afford to keep star player Lionel Messi and he left for PSG  The club recorded a £409m loss last season and have accrued £1billion of debt  But Joan Laporta insists he held out hope Messi would play without being paid  Club president also insists they tried to re-sign former forward Neymar 

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Barcelona president Joan Laporta insists he held hopes that Lionel Messi would play for the club for free in order to stay at the Camp Nou and turn down Paris Saint-Germain.

The club could not afford to keep hold of their greatest ever player amid their unprecedented financial woes, with the club racking up more than £1billion in debt and recording a £409million loss for last season. 

Club president Laporta explained earlier in the summer that Barcelona's wage bill with six-time Ballon d'Or winner Messi on the books would equal 110 per cent of their income. 

Barcelona president Joan Laporta

Lionel Messi left Barcelona for PSG

Barcelona president Joan Laporta (L) insists he held hopes that Lionel Messi (R) would play for the club for free

Messi bid an emotional farewell in the summer, with the club unable to afford to keep him

Messi bid an emotional farewell in the summer, with the club unable to afford to keep him

As a result, the Argentina star - who scored 672 goals for the club and won LaLiga 10 times along with four Champions League crowns - bid an emotional farewell in a press conference before signing for the Ligue 1 giants in the summer on a two-year deal.

But Laporta, 59, has revealed he retained hope the 34-year-old would at the

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