While it is no secret that Lionel Messi is one of the highest-paid players in the world, the details of his contract were relatively, and, rather respectfully, undisclosed.
Spanish publication El Mundo leaked the details of Messi’s contract on their front page, claiming that Messi is being paid an eye-watering €555,237,619 for his current contract, set to expire in the summer. This is the sum he received over four years. €138 million per season was paid as a fixed amount to the player, with variables further pushing up the payout. €115,225,000 was paid merely as an acceptance bonus, for Messi to put pen to paper, whereas the final €77,929,955 was paid as a loyalty bonus to the player.
Messi is set to take legal action against El Mundo and Barcelona are set to follow suit, with any person who leaked the information out of the club being on borrowed time. Former President Josep Maria Bartomeu has denied any claims of ratting out the information, according to reports in Spain.
Here is what Barcelona head coach Ronald Koeman had to say after Barcelona’s victory against Athletic Bilbao: “I don’t understand how anyone could link Messi to Barca’s ruin.”He has spent years proving his quality and doing great things for this club, helping it win many important trophies.
“Whoever published this had bad intentions and wanted to cause Barca damage. But we have to be united and focused, we have to forget about whatever has been published.
“Without Leo we couldn’t aspire to win very much. We have known for a very long time that he is the best player in the world, he has done so much for this club and is decisive. We have to respect everything Messi has done.
“If this was someone from the club they cannot have a future here.”