‘I don’t know how that would work with Financial Fair Play’: Ander Herrera doubts how PSG can sign Lionel Messi this summer while adhering to UEFA’s regulations despite club’s desire to steal him away from Barcelona
- Ander Herrera doubts how PSG can sign Barcelona star Lionel Messi this year
- Herrera believes it would be a struggle to bring Messi in due to FFP regulations
- However, the Spaniard refused to be drawn into any talk of the Argentine
- Messi has been linked with PSG since he handed in a transfer request last year
Ander Herrera believes Paris Saint-Germain would struggle to sign Lionel Messi this summer due to Financial Fair Play regulations.
The Barcelona talisman has been linked with a move to the French champions since he handed in a shock transfer request last summer, and is available to leave the Nou Camp on a free at the end of the season should he choose not to renew his contract.
The 33-year-old has also been linked with Manchester City, with the two state-owned clubs the only real plausible candidates to afford his eye-watering wages.
Ander Herrera doubts how Paris Saint-Germain can sign Barcelona star Lionel Messi (pictured)
Herrera (left) has doubts how the deal would pass Financial Fair Play regulations with Neymar (middle) and Kylian Mbappe (right) already at the club
But even with the Gulf state of Qatar behind PSG, Herrera has doubts over how the club can make any deal possible with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe already at the club.
‘Messi, Neymar and Mbappe together? I don’t know how that would work with Financial Fair Play, but I don’t think so,’ he told El Larguero (via AS).
While he has doubts over how a deal could be done, the former Manchester United midfielder was unwilling to discuss speculation on a move for Messi in any further detail, out of respect for Barcelona.
‘I’m not going to get into this one,’ he said. ‘When everyone at Barca was talking about Neymar, inside and outside the club, we did not like it.
‘I’m not going to do something that I don’t like being done to me. I have a lot of respect for Barca, Messi, his coach and his team-mates.
Messi was pictured in a PSG shirt on the front page of France Football on Monday
France Football’s report claims Neymar (right) is enticing Messi to a PSG move this year
‘It is not a strategy. Me, I will not speak about him. I respect those who do it, but I put myself in the shoes of the club in which Messi has evolved.’
Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman last week accused PSG of being ‘disrespectful’ for continuing to discuss Messi in public after Angel Di Maria encouraged talk of a high-profile transfer going through.
Herrera added: ‘If I were I at Barca, I would not like people talking about Messi. It does not seem to me to be a lack of respect, but I will not do it.’
It comes a day after France Football published a photoshopped picture of Messi in a PSG kit on their page, with the report claiming that Neymar has been playing a role in the Argentine’s future.
The pair played together for four seasons at Barcelona and were two-thirds of the ‘MSN’ strike force that won the treble with the Catalans in 2015. Messi and Neymar also won another LaLiga title, two more Spanish Cups and the FIFA Club World Cup together in Spain.
Neymar left Barcelona in 2017 to seal a £200million move to PSG and has formed a strong partnership with Mbappe, who arrived at the Parc des Princes in the same summer.
Messi handed in a transfer request last summer following failed promises made by the club
MESSI’S MASSIVE CONTRACT – THE BIG NUMBERS
£491,732,285 – signed in 2016, it is the biggest contract in sporting history
£122m – earns every season in guaranteed gross salary
£102m – takes home for renewing his contract in 2017
£69m – picked up a ‘loyalty bonus’ for staying at the Nou Camp
£3.1m – if Barcelona wins the Champions League
£1.75m – what he receives for playing 60 per cent of Barcelona’s games
£452m – amount he’s already earned from the contract with five months left
Messi stayed at Barcelona and his future away from the Nou Camp was not questioned until his shock desire to exit last summer.
His transfer request came shortly after the Catalans’ shocking 8-2 Champions League quarter-final loss to Bayern Munich. Messi vented his frustrations at former club president Josep Maria Bartomeu over failed promises made to him.
The 58-year-old chief resigned from his duties in October of last year following intense criticism from Barcelona fans in the aftermath of Messi’s transfer request.
The Catalans’ captain opted to stay at the LaLiga giants after he was not granted the free transfer clause he believed existed in his contract.
But with his contract entering its final six months, Messi can start negotiating and deal with another club now.
Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman admits he is not certain Messi will stay beyond the expiration of his current deal at the end of June.
‘I’m not confident about that,’ Koeman told The Athletic when asked if he thinks Messi will stay.
‘I’m hopeful, yes, about this because he’s still a great player and he’s still winning matches for us, for the team.
Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman (right) admits he is unsure whether Messi will sign a new deal
‘I’m enjoying being his coach, if you look at his qualities every day in the training sessions, it’s incredible. Of course, he came as a young kid to Barcelona. And I still don’t see Leo Messi in another shirt other than the Barca shirt.’
At the end of last month, Messi’s bumper financial package at Barcelona was sensationally leaked by Spanish newspaper El Mundo.
The shocking and revealing report showed Messi’s current deal will end up costing Barcelona £492m (€555m) when it concludes this summer. The four-year deal was signed in 2017 and will end this June when the 33-year-old will be able to leave for nothing.
Messi has been guaranteed £122m (€138m) a season in gross salary according to the leaked contract.
He earned a ‘renewal fee’ of £102m (€115m) for accepting the contract and is said to take home £69m (€79m) each year in a ‘loyalty’ bonus for staying at the Nou Camp.
Messi’s Barcelona finances were leaked to Spanish newspaper El Mundo last week
The report from El Mundo goes on to claim that Messi still has five months left on his current deal and has already earned an eye-watering £452m (€511m) so far.
As a part of his current deal, Messi earned an extra £616,172 (€695,748) for winning FIFA’s Best Player award during the 2018-19 campaign.
The Argentine is also guaranteed a whopping £3.1m (€3.5m) if Barcelona win the Champions League – something the club hasn’t achieved since 2015.
Messi vowed to take financial action against El Mundo after the story was leaked at the end of January.
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