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Barcelona 'Have To Pay Lionel Messi A €33 Million Loyalty Bonus' Even If He Leaves For Free

Barcelona 'Have To Pay Lionel Messi A €33 Million Loyalty Bonus' Even If He Leaves For Free

Barcelona will 'have to pay' Lionel Messi a huge €33 million loyalty bonus next summer - even if he chooses to leave the club.

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Messi attempted to bring his Camp Nou career to an end last summer but was blocked from doing so due to a €700m release clause.

But he'll be able to walk for free in the summer and ESPN claim he'll still be owed a huge wad of cash from Barca.

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Terms in the 33-year-old's new contract signed in 2017 meant he would get a €66 million release clause.

Image Credit: PA
Image Credit: PA

Half of that was paid back in February and the other half is due upon the expiry of his contract in June.

It means he'll get the money even if he chooses to end his near two decade relationship with the Blaugrana.

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According to El Chiringuito via Sport Witness, Manchester City remain favourites to sign the winger but there's still two 'renewals' that need to happen at the Etihad.

The report claims Messi wants manager Pep Guardiola to renew his deal as well as international teammate Sergio Aguero.

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Guardiola managed the six-time Ballon d'Or winner between 2008 and 2012, winning the Champions League twice in their time together.

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Messi's frustration at Barcelona came due to former president Josep Bartomeu's management of the club.

He told Goal: "Throughout the year I had been telling the president that I wanted to leave, that the time had come to seek new goals and new directions in my career.

"He told me all the time: 'We'll talk, not now, this and that', but nothing. The president did not give me a clue at what he was really saying.

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Image Credit: PA
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"What they say is that I did not say it before June 10 - but I repeat, we were in the middle of all the competitions and it was not the moment.

"But apart from that, the president always told me, 'When the season is over, you decide if you stay or leave', he never set a date, and well, it was simply to make to the club official that he was not following his word, but not to get into a fight because I did not want to fight with the club."

Do you think Lionel Messi will leave Barcelona this summer?

Let us know in the comments.

Featured Image Credit: PA Images

Topics: Football News, Football, Barcelona, Transfers, Lionel Messi, Transfer news, La Liga

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Daniel Marland

Daniel is a freelance journalist for SPORTbible and he has previous experience with Manchester United. He has spoken to some of the biggest names in sport including Rio Ferdinand, Peter Crouch, WWE COO Triple H and former WWE champion Drew McIntyre. May or may not do a decent impression of Jamie Carragher.