Barcelona are reportedly in a race to announce Lionel Messi’s new contract in the first week of August in order for the Argentine star to play in their friendly with Juventus.
Messi has been a free agent since his £500,000-a-week contract expired on June 30 but has agreed to a 50 per cent pay cut in order to remain a Barca player for another five years.
But the Catalans’ financial issues mean they need to balance their books and slash their wage bill in order to comply with LaLiga’s strict salary cap before they can register Messi as a player.
According to Spanish outlet Sport, the 34-year-old is scheduled to return for pre-season training on August 2.
But the pressure is on to get Messi’s deal pushed through before their friendly with Cristiano Ronaldo’s Juve on August 8.
The Catalans will take on the Serie A side in the Joan Gamper Trophy at the Nou Camp and the report claims Barca want to have the deal done in time for Messi to feature.
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