During a recent chat with RAC1 (h/t SPORT), Barcelona president Joan Laporta has given an insight into the club’s plans for the January transfer window as well as addressed the rumours of a possible return of Lionel Messi to the club next summer.
Laporta was in Arauca, Colombia as part of the club foundation’s collaboration with UNHCR ACNUR and Save The Children when he granted the interview with the aforementioned outlet.
Talking about the collaboration project itself and what it aims to achieve, Laporta said: “We are in Arauca, we are seeing cruel living conditions, terrible for those who suffer from them. We will never be able to know what it is, but we try to help and give them life solutions.”
“At Barça, we give hope and joy. It fills us with pride that Barça can make people smile. Some children interviewed us, they are up to date on football, they like this sport, participate in it, and they like our players. We bring football here.”
Talking about his interactions with the children in Arauca, Laporta said: “The boys and girls who interviewed me yesterday asked me about football, about Messi, Lewandowski, Pedri, Gavi…”
The Barcelona president particularly mentioned how he was asked about Messi’s possible return to the club next summer, but he declined to issue a response in order to not spark any controversy.
They also asked me about Messi when they accompanied me on the walks. They told me that I had to make him return to Barça. I told them that he is from Barça, that we have been lucky to have him, and that we will see,” Laporta said.
“I don’t want to talk about him because he is part of PSG and I don’t want any problem,” he further added.
Laporta and Barcelona continue to be associated with the Super League project alongside Real Madrid and Juventus despite it facing severe criticism and backlash. But the president explained that the Super League would help the club emerge out of its financial issues, saying:
“There is a bonus of €1000 million for the founding clubs, to be distributed. It is something that has to be specified because it is a figure that has been changing. Before it was higher.
What it would mean for Barça if we win the competition is about €300-350 million, it’s much more money than what can be earned by winning the Champions League.”
“We are solving Barça’s economic problems without the Super League, but with this new competition we would do better, we would be one of the most economically solid clubs in the world,” Laporta further added.
Recently, it has been reported that the contract renewal of Ousmane Dembele is being treated as a priority at Barcelona.
When asked about the Frenchman, Laporta insisted that the winger was happy and that his contract is not something that is keeping the club occupied at the moment.
We have him happy, motivated, with a valid contract and there will be time to talk about this. It’s not what we’re busiest with right now.”
The Barça supremo also discussed the club’s plans for the January transfer window and how the La Liga Financial Fair Play could again hinder them, saying:
“We are limited by Fair Play. The elimination from the Champions League has hurt us, too. We are working to see how we compensate it in case the coach and the technical secretariat want to sign players.”
“The Fair Play rules, because there are other parameters, make us negative. There are many interpretations, La Liga does its own, and the clubs do ours. We have to negotiate to find a solution.”