The world’s second-highest-paid athlete is taking a major pay cut.
While the exact amount of Messi’s new contract is not yet known, Goal reports that Messi agreed to halve his yearly earnings.
Messi became a free agent on the first of the month after expressing a desire to leave Barcelona last summer due to his fractious relationship with then-president Josep Maria Baromeu. Joan Laporta, president of the team when Messi started his career, returned, giving the superstar a reason to stay.
La Liga president Javier Tebas said the team could not legally re-sign the club’s all-time leading scorer under the same terms after exceeding the limit this year.
- Due to the pandemic, Barca’s salary cap dropped to $454 million compared to the $796 million limit it had in 2019.
- The team is already $1.5 billion in debt.
The new contract is expected to be formally announced in the coming weeks.