As a result of Barcelona's inability to give Lionel Messi a new contract within the confines of the La Liga pay limit in August 2021, the Argentine subsequently signed for Ligue 1 powerhouses Paris Saint-Germain. Despite a tough first season at the Parc des Princes, he has begun the 2022/23 season on fire, scoring four goals and dishing out seven assists in eight league appearances.
However, the 35-year-old forward's two-year contract with the Parisians is set to end in June next summer. Barcelona are aware of this are actively exploring the idea of signing their best player back to the club so that he may end his career at the Camp Nou.
There has been much speculation regarding whether or not he would return to the Blaugrana. The Catalans' president Joan Laporta has addressed the rumors on many occasions, despite the fact that they are still just that at this point.
What Barcelona need to do for Messi to accept return?
El Larguero and Cadena SER journalist Sique Rodriguez claims that Lionel Messi is still owed 'a lot of money' from his time while playing with the team. In 2020, while Josep Maria Bartomeu was still president of Barcelona, the Argentine was among the players who consented to salary deferrals at the height of the epidemic.
Further, it has been widely claimed that the Catalans still owe Messi more than €50 million in unpaid salaries. As soon as he left, rumors began to circulate that the Camp Nou side are in talks with his attorneys about paying off the debt in two installments starting in 2021 and continuing through this year.
Yet, according to the latest reports, the payments seem to be overdue. Whether or not Barcelona will be able to bring back the seven time Ballon d'Or winner next summer due to the unpaid salaries and his probable compensation demands for the following seasons is uncertain.
According to Barcelona's vice president of economics Eduard Romeu, who was interviewed by Catalunya Radio, the team would be able to afford to bring Leo, who earns around €30 million per year, back next summer if he returns as a free agent. What is more, he has acknowledged that cutting the enormous salary cost is a challenging undertaking, but they has done a fantastic job so far, reducing the wage bill by roughly €150 million, and further progress will be made.