Barcelona Reportedly to Offer Lionel Messi 'Record-Breaking' Signing Bonus

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistOctober 12, 2017

BARCELONA, SPAIN - OCTOBER 01:  Lionel Messi of Barcelona looks on prior to the La Liga match between Barcelona and Las Palmas at Camp Nou on October 1, 2017 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)
Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

Barcelona are reportedly set to offer Lionel Messi a "record-breaking" signing bonus of between £79 million and £85 million to put pen to paper on a new deal at the Camp Nou that will also see him earn £500,000 per week. 

Catalan newspaper L'Ara (h/t MailOnline's Pete Jenson) reported Barcelona's wage bill already eats up 84 per cent of the club's overall revenue, a figure that does not account for the wages his new contract will entail or the signing bonus, which would be paid "across the years of his new deal."

The club are reaching out to help fund Messi's new contract, their overall wage bill and their planned stadium renovations through sponsorship deals.

They hope to have a new deal in place with kit manufacturers Nike in 2018 and are looking to sell the naming rights to the Camp Nou in a 25-year deal that could generate funds in the region of £179 million.

Messi is in the final season of his contract at Barca, and while his father and brother have signed off on a new three-and-a-half-year deal, the player is yet to do so as he is "reluctant to sit down with Barcelona's underfire president Josep Bartomeu and give him what would be a 'vote of confidence' opportunity."

FC Barcelona's president Josep Maria Bartomeu arrives to give a press conference at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on October 2, 2017.
Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu confirmed today two of the club's board members resigned in the wake of his
JOSEP LAGO/Getty Images

Bartomeu has been criticised for his handling of Neymar, the club's struggles in the transfer market and their relative decline on the pitch of late, and he recently avoided a vote of no confidence despite the petition receiving more than 12,000 signatures.

Nevertheless, Messi could sign the contract as early as next month.

The 30-year-old is enjoying a stunning campaign so far this season with 14 goals, including a four-goal haul, a hat-trick and three braces.

He has also been his usual self on the international stage, almost singlehandedly firing Argentina to the 2018 FIFA World Cup:

It's of critical importance the club tie him down, and despite the phenomenal costs involved, it's arguably a small price to pay compared with losing him for free and embarking on the impossible task of replacing him.

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