Lionel Messi continues to be the major headline in Barcelona after details of his eye-watering £492million contract were leaked, and now El Mundo have revealed even more staggering clauses in his deal.
According to Daily Mail in UK, El Mundo recently published the full details of the Argentine superstar’s mega-money contract at the Nou Camp, which he signed in 2017 and will end this June when the 33-year-old will be able to leave for nothing.
And now the Spanish paper have given football fans even more incredible detail into his contract with the cash-strapped giants, who have recently published their financial report for the 2019-20 season which revealed a gross debt of €1.2billion (£1bn).
The report claims that Barcelona demanded Messi, in exchange for putting pen to paper on the biggest contract in sport history, should ‘integrate into Catalan society and culture’.
Barcelona have reportedly been looking to do their all to improve Messi’s grasp of the Catalan language.
The contract also states that Messi must ‘adopt a suitable personal conduct and rhythm of life’ and not to ever engage in doping.
Finally, it has astonishingly been revealed that there was an agreement in the contract that would allow Messi to become a free agent.
The report claims that if Catalonia gained independence, Barcelona would be kicked out of LaLiga to play in a Catalan league.
It was agreed in the contract that if that was the case – with Catalonia having pushed for independence back in 2017 – then the six-time Ballon d’Or winner would automatically be able to leave for free.
The most recent revelations come after the leaked contract disclosed over the weekend that Messi has been guaranteed €138m (£122m) per season in gross salary.
He earned a ‘renewal fee’ of €115m (£102m) for accepting the contract and is said to take home €79m (£69m) each year in a ‘loyalty’ bonus for staying at the Nou Camp.
The report from El Mundo went 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.
The Spanish newspaper put both his normal contract and image rights under the microscope before breaking down where certain variables were met since the 2017-18 campaign.
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.
Other variables include Messi banking another £1.75m (€1.9m) if he plays 60 per cent of games, while he will receive extra payments for each knockout stage of the Champions League he reached, as well as winning LaLiga and the Copa del Rey.
The newspaper ran the original story under a headline that said Messi will ‘ruin Barcelona’ with the Argentine star planning to pursue legal action against El Mundo and anyone at the club found to have passed on the confidential information.
Since the finer details of the contract were published, the club’s former president Josep Bartomeu denied being behind the sensational leak.
Much-maligned Bartomeu resigned from the club last October and his relationship with Messi soured when he wasn’t allowed to leave last summer.
‘It’s completely false [I was involved in the leak],’ he told TV3 in Spain. ‘This is a very serious issue because it’s completely illegal to leak any professional contract to the media.
‘It’s easy to make accusations but this is not a joke and it’s going to end up in court.
‘Messi deserves everything he earns, be that for professional or commercial reasons. Without the pandemic, Barcelona would be more than capable of paying those numbers.’