To start, the Argentinean, who has enjoyed a few days off to rest and disconnect in what has otherwise been a non-stop season, is totally focused on the job in hand.
He has the chance to win what would be his 11th league title (one away from Paco Gento’s record); and also possibly his eighth Pichichi award and his seventh Copa del Rey, which would pull him level with the record holder, Piru Gainza.
Along the way, he will be trying to make progress in negotiations, with Barcelona’s sporting project for 2021-22 at the top of the list of priorities. Messi is fully aware of the economic situation at the club, which has only got worse during the pandemic, but how the squad will be strengthened is paramount. What he wants to see from Laporta is the ambition to start a project which, as the president himself has said, will bring the Champions League trophy back to Camp Nou. Barça have not been European champions since 2015.
Instigating talks over Messi’s new contract won’t necessarily remain on hold until Jorge Messi arrives in Barcelona.
The player could meet the president without the need for his father to be present and it is practically guaranteed that Messi will have made his decision before the current LaLiga season is concluded. Some sources claim that the issue of Messi continuity could be resolved quicker than expected, but right now, no advances have been made.
Messi could be offered a salary for life
Club sources also admit that they will need to convince the player by offering an attractive contract – possibly even a lifelong deal. Uniting the Messi brand with the Barça brand for life was one of the objectives which all three presidential candidates set out.
Laporta still holds that idea. Messi could be given a lifelong salary from Barça, who could defer some payments, including the ones they already owe him. Messi would not be paid by Barça during any time spent playing elsewhere – if he decides to end his playing career in the United States or Qatar.