Lionel Messi has agreed to take a 50 per cent pay cut at Barcelona. The Argentina international is currently a free agent after his contract expired. Barcelona have been scrambling to cut their wage bill so as to be able to add Messi to their squad. They are struggling with financial issues and so far have been unable to register any of their new signings.

Lionel Messi has agreed a new five-year deal with Barcelona, according to reports in Spain. The Argentina international is understood to be understanding of the club’s financial problems and has agreed to a 50% reduction to his wages. It is believed money was never the issue for Messi, but instead taxation was the topic causing the most issues on both sides.

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has won the Copa del Rey with Argentina after his team-mate Sergio Aguero scored the only goal in a – win over Ecuador. La Liga president Javier Tebas says he will not “turn a blind eye” to Messi’s move to Real Madrid. Barcelona are still trying to offload several players, including Samuel Umtiti, Miralem Pjanic and Antoine Griezmann. The Catalan giants have also signed Memphis Depay, Sergio Aguer, Emerson Royal and Eric Garcia.

“This is a right that the clubs have and we have to safeguard the integrity of LaLiga.

“WE OFTEN HAVE TO EXPLAIN [THE ECONOMIC CONTROLS] TO AGENTS AND PLAYERS BECAUSE THEY DON’T KNOW ABOUT IT OR THINK CLUBS ARE DECEIVING THEM, AND WE’VE HAD TO EXPLAIN IT IN RECENT YEARS.”

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