The slow courtship of Messi

After the two public messages from Laporta and the affection he gave him on the trip to Paris, the president has to propose an offer of creative renewal to the Argentine.


The courtship of Messi will be slow. So logic says. One, the player, already said that he would not decide until the end of the season because he wants to look at the grass. With 34 titles at Barça, and a blank year last season, he has between eyebrows and raised his seventh Copa del Rey (it would be another record since it would equal Gainza) in the final of La Cartuja against Athletic. And, if you can, put the icing on the season with LaLiga. Another, Joan Laporta, has to know how many financial resources he will have before submitting an offer. Although he already has something on his mind.The important thing in the offer to Messi will be creativity. Link your brand to that of Barça in the long term. It is easy to say, but it will be difficult to put it on paper despite the fact that the intentions of the parties converge. Barça does not want to lose Messi on the pitch or, when he leaves or retires, the tremendous projection of his image. The Argentine, for his part, has already declared on several occasions his desire to live in Barcelona in the future and be linked to the club. He has even indicated a certain preference for the position of sports director. In any position, he would be a very powerful ambassador for the club.

What does seem evident is that, to this day, Messi has not yet made a decision, which is already a success for Laporta, who asked the Argentine during the campaign to wait for Barça. And it has. There are gestures that show that Messi is more comfortable than last season, when after months of wear and tear and warnings to Bartomeu he decided to send the burofax at the end of August to cut his relationship with the Barça club. Things have changed since then.

After a start to the season in which he was noted taciturn by the departure of Suárez, his gestural language has been changing. His relationship with Koeman is one of respect and mutual and he senses a much better feeling with his teammates. His good feeling on the pitch with Alba or Busquets has been joined by his connection with young people like Messi and Ilaix and a better understanding with De Jong, Griezmann and Dembélé. That adds up to a lot, although it's not definitive.

Of course, Messi has many options open. PSG is convinced of being able to sign him. And at Manchester City, Messi has Guardiola. But in Barcelona it has everything. And a team that progresses and to which Laporta wants to add the correct pieces to make Messi fulfill his dream of lifting the Champions League again. The date on which Jorge Messi, the player's father, will arrive to begin a formal negotiation is not confirmed. For the moment, the courtship will be slow.

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