Barcelona’s presidential candidate, Emili Rousaud, has admitted that Lionel Messi’s salary is too big for the club due to their current financial crisis.
Rousaud also said he would like to keep the 33-year-old at the Nou Camp on a reduced contract.
Messi, who tried to force an exit from Barca in the summer, has less than seven months left on his deal.
He is however free to begin negotiations with foreign clubs from January.
“In the club’s current situation Messi’s salary is not sustainable, so we’ll have to reach an agreement with him. We will present an attractive project to him,” Rousaud told Spanish newspaper AS on Tuesday.
“What matters most here is the sporting project. When Messi said he was leaving he didn’t mention money. He has the highest salary in the world, no-one earns more than him, he doesn’t want to leave because he earns too little.
“He wants to leave because he wants to win trophies. He referred to that recently when he said: “The Champions League is not within our reach.” He wants a team full of talent.”