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European Football Rumors, Messi Broke Contract With Barcelona

If Barcelona try to keep Lionel Messi, it could put the club in danger for the next 50 years, according to the club's president, Joan Laporta.

Messi, 34, is leaving Barcelona because the club failed to offer him a new contract due to pressure from La Liga rules on player salaries.

 Reportedly, there was a private company that wanted to invest in La Liga, a move that would facilitate Messi's signing, but at the same time, it would mean Barca relinquish its TV advertising rights."I can't make a decision that will affect the club for the next 50 years," said Laporta.

 "This club is over 100 years old and is above everything and everyone including the best player in the world. We will always thank him for everything he has done for us.

"In order to meet the requirements, we need to do what we did, or put the club in a difficult position. We couldn't go on with that, and we had to make a decision, we did."

Messi, Barcelona's all-time top scorer, agreed to a five-year contract that reduced his salary - but in order to secure his registration, the club had to continue cutting its salary, which has failed.

 "Today he wanted to stay, so he's not happy about this," Laporta said. "We all wanted him to stay. For Messi he has to adapt to reality. That's the truth that can never change, and he knows, I wish him well wherever he goes."

Laporta added that he did not want to give up any hope that he could keep Messi. "The debate is closed," he said. (BBC SPORT).

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