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Friday 19 September 2014

Messi's new 'contract worth €400k a week'

Published 16/05/2014 | 11:59

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Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring
Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring

Lionel Messi has agreed a new contract with Barcelona, which is expected to make him the highest paid player in the world at an estimated €400k per week.

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The Argentine forward's existing deal already ran until 2018, but Messi has now been given improved terms.

According to a report on the website of Barcelona-based newspaper Sport, the new contract is worth a record €20million per season, plus further incentives, while tying Messi to the club until 2019.

A statement on the club's website read: "FC Barcelona has reached an agreement to adjust the terms in the contract binding Leo Messi to the club as a professional first team player.

"The revised and updated contract will be signed over the next few days."

The deal follows lengthy negotiations during which it was reported that the 26-year-old wanted to surpass Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo as the best-paid player in the world.

The news comes on the eve of Barcelona's title decider against La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid, who will travel to the Nou Camp on Saturday.

Barca need a win to take the title, with a draw enough for Atletico.

Messi has scored 28 goals in 30 league appearances to lead his side's charge once again, and has 41 in all competitions this season.

In all the Argentine has scored 354 goals in 424 official matches for Barcelona, the highest scorer in the club's history.

The new contract will see the 26-year-old move into a second decade with the club, having come through the ranks to make his debut during the 2004/05 season.

He has gone on to win six league titles, three Champions League crowns, two Copa del Reys, two Club World Cups and two European Super Cups.

Securing Messi's future is a major piece of business for Barca as they shape up for a crucial summer.

The club were hit with a one-year transfer ban for violations of the rules on signing minors earlier this year. That ban has been suspended on appeal, and Barca need to make a series of moves this summer in order to guard against the possibility that it is reinstated in full for both the winter transfer window and next summer.

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