Barcelona on the brink

Dave Smith

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Why would they? They still have to pay them.
They have already signed the contracts haven't they? If so Barca are already on the hook I believe.
 

Morty_

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Considering they need to raise 200m by reducing wages or selling players, I don't think one can solely blame Messi. Yeah, his high wages meant that other marquee signings would be asking for money relative to that. However, the issue has been their transfer business at large and who has benefitted from those insane wages.

For example, Coutinho as per some data analytics firms wasn't the most influential Pool player, and they had said that it wouldn't be a wise signing. Yet they paid 140m for him. They paid 105m for Dembele. 120m for Griezmann. Then there's the Pjanic-Arthur swap. All in all, they've wasted 450m on players who have turned out to be very high profile flops and were getting paid insane wages.

Move Messi out, and next season they'd lose another 40m for not getting into CL as well.
Barcelona are bad, but they aren't so bad as to not qualify for CL without Messi.

Come on, they were what, 15 points ahead of 5th place last season?
 

Acheron

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They are crippling themselves to convince a player who only a year ago publicly announced his intention to leave.
That to me is the most worrying thing. I still think he did all that just to get rid of Bartomeu and was some sort of ultimatum by him, or he either resigns or I leave (which he didn't follow through), but his public declarations about not wanting to be there anymore and not believing on the project was a heavy blow for the morale of the team and staff. At that point I think they needed to let him go, or at least that's what any top club should do if a player goes to public say he wants to leave and win stuff somewhere else.

Then aside from that I get why they're trying to get him, of course those claims that he brings a lot revenue to the club have been exaggerated to the point of being ridiculous but ultimately his value is for what he does in the pitch and in that sense you could argue he's irreplaceable for them. Not that you need him to win titles or that they have won a lot lately with him and they're still carrying a lot of problems generated by previous boards.
 

anant

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Barcelona are bad, but they aren't so bad as to not qualify for CL without Messi.

Come on, they were what, 15 points ahead of 5th place last season?
Arguable, but I really see them struggling for 4th place without Messi.

When Messi was on the pitch vs No Messi, GD difference was 0.89. Among all players who played >1000 minutes, there was none with a higher difference. For reference, the same number for Griezmann was -0.11 and for Dembele -0.25
 

RedDevil@84

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What do resident Barcelona fans think of the whole thing? Is it keep Messi whatever it takes and not care about anyone else in the team?
 

anant

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Did you just ignore the stats that were posted?

They might adapt and change their play style, but that's all hypothetical. The difference in their record when Messi is on the field vs when he isn't is light and day. This is also backed by xG -xGA numbers as well! My point is they'll go through a phase where they'd be in "turmoil" , but will obviously find their footing after a season or two

The point is that Barca, for all their strength are a top side because of 1 player. Remove him and you'd need to change everything as their play style for the last decade has been built around him. If you want to raise 200m, it's wiser to sell off the NPAs than sell one of your only players who's justifying insane wages
 

TheRedHearted

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No. He'd get run off the park against any top PL side. Even at City he might struggle. I think he's finished at the top, top level(meaning he's just not a great player at that level anymore). He's just still a fantastic player at the level below that yet
So why are people (I believe Barcelona fans) okay with him playing for Barcelona?
 

anant

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Utterly pointless stats.

As if that team without Messi is struggling for top 4 ffs.
How are they pointless. The team concedes more than they score when Griezmann and Dembele are on the pitch ffs! If it was a positive GD, sure you can make a case but we're talking about a negative GD here.

That team played 3 games without Messi being involved in any way- twice against Eibar and once against Elche who narrowly survived. 2 W and a draw (could and should have lost against Eibar btw in the last GW). 2 more games where Messi didn't start - they were drawing after 60 odd minutes when he came on (and won both games - I believe this was against Betis).

They'll most likely get top 4, but it'll be a fight and it won't be as straightforward as people think it'd be. We're talking about a player who's been contributing to 50% of their league goals pretty much every season. Surely you realize it'd be a massive drop when he leaves
 

Iker Quesadillas

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The last time Real Madrid or Barcelona missed out on the top 4 was in 2003, almost twenty years ago. If xG tells you that Barcelona are going to struggle to make it to top 4 without Messi then it's probably an incomplete analysis.
 
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RedDevil@84

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Did you just ignore the stats that were posted?

They might adapt and change their play style, but that's all hypothetical. The difference in their record when Messi is on the field vs when he isn't is light and day. This is also backed by xG -xGA numbers as well! My point is they'll go through a phase where they'd be in "turmoil" , but will obviously find their footing after a season or two

The point is that Barca, for all their strength are a top side because of 1 player. Remove him and you'd need to change everything as their play style for the last decade has been built around him. If you want to raise 200m, it's wiser to sell off the NPAs than sell one of your only players who's justifying insane wages
So say today, Messi refuses to sign and goes to City, then Barca shuts shop
 
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They'll most likely get top 4, but it'll be a fight and it won't be as straightforward as people think it'd be. We're talking about a player who's been contributing to 50% of their league goals pretty much every season. Surely you realize it'd be a massive drop when he leaves
Madrid were scoring 100 goals a season in Ronaldo's final years, he left, they now score like 70 and have been nowhere near like struggling for top 4, in their worst season following Ronaldo's exit they were shocking and yet still waltzed to 3rd. And then didn't they go win the fecking league the second season he left despite scoring a lot less?

The idea that a team with that much quality (Frenkie de Jong, Pedri, Busquets, Alba, Griezmann etc), suddenly struggles for top 4 because Messi isn't in the side is ridiculous. Let's not make out they are a team of muppets without Messi.
 

anant

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The last time Real Madrid or Barcelona missed out on the top 4 was in 2003, almost twenty years ago. If xG tells you that Barcelona are going to struggle to make it to top 4 without Messi then it's probably an incomplete analysis.
I'm using the raw numbers here. GD difference when he was on the pitch vs when he wasn't.

If a side is scoring almost 1 more goal with Messi than without him per 90, one would like to believe there is value in keeping him, especially when you compare the same stat for Griezmann and Dembele. Eventually Barcelona will find their feet and they're too get lost in the wilderness, but with it wouldn't be as easy a transition as people are expecting. In the 1st half of the season when Messi was just playing at the level of an elite player, and not GOAT Barca were lying in 5th or 6th position, let's not forget that
 
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The point is that Barca, for all their strength are a top side because of 1 player. Remove him and you'd need to change everything as their play style for the last decade has been built around him.
Barca are a top side because they have a shit tonne of starting players of pure quality. Kin ell man.
 
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In the 1st half of the season when Messi was just playing at the level of an elite player, and not GOAT Barca were lying in 5th or 6th position, let's not forget that
The first half of the season was clearly new manager clusterfeck. Once Koeman got to grips and the shadow of that Messi sideshow bollocks went away, Barca improved week on week.
 
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They'd need to change their play style significantly, and it might take time.
We've just seen Pedri and Busquets give the European Champions a footballing lesson, without Messi. I'll add Alba to that, and we all know the talent of De Jong. They'll play that way regardless and thankfully they have much better options than Morata up top.
 

anant

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Madrid were scoring 100 goals a season in Ronaldo's final years, he left, they now score like 70 and have been nowhere near like struggling for top 4, in their worst season following Ronaldo's exit they were shocking and yet still waltzed to 3rd. And then didn't they go win the fecking league the second season he left despite scoring a lot less?

The idea that a team with that much quality (Frenkie de Jong, Pedri, Busquets, Alba, Griezmann etc), suddenly struggles for top 4 because Messi isn't in the side is ridiculous. Let's not make out they are a team of muppets without Messi.
ROnaldo was scontributing to ~50% more goals than 2nd placed played (Benzema) in his last 2 seasons. For Messi, that number is closer to ~90-100% (Suarez and then Griezmann)

And they're a great side, but everything there has been built around a single player. Remember the start of the season, where Messi was playing more like a human? This elite team with Griezmann, Busquets, Alba, Frenkie was 6th or so after 15 odd games. So, let's not assume that great sides cannot collapse.
 
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ROnaldo was scontributing to ~50% more goals than 2nd placed played (Benzema) in his last 2 seasons. For Messi, that number is closer to ~90-100% (Suarez and then Griezmann)

And they're a great side, but everything there has been built around a single player. Remember the start of the season, where Messi was playing more like a human? This elite team with Griezmann, Busquets, Alba, Frenkie was 6th or so after 15 odd games. So, let's not assume that great sides cannot collapse.
Ahhhh, so it's wasn't because the side was struggling with the new manager and new direction? No, it was cause Messi wasn't playing superhuman, feck me that's convenient.

They are shit when he plays because of him, they are amazing when he plays because of him. Turning that into a double win for Messi is impressive shit.
 

anant

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The first half of the season was clearly new manager clusterfeck. Once Koeman got to grips and the shadow of that Messi sideshow bollocks went away, Barca improved week on week.
Messi last season till 31st Dec - 14 appearances 7 goals lying in 6th
Messi from 1st Jan - 21 appearances 23 goals finished 3rd (most points in the league since the start of the year).

I'm not even saying that they'll finish outside top 4 for sure, just saying that they'll be pulled into that fight. Surely you realize Messi is worth an additional 12-18 points to that Barca side if not more?
 
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Messi last season till 31st Dec - 14 appearances 7 goals lying in 6th
Messi from 1st Jan - 21 appearances 23 goals finished 3rd (most points in the league since the start of the year).
That had absolutely nothing with the side getting used the manager and the entire team getting better as the season progressed, nothing.

It was all Messi.

feck me can you hear yourself?
 

anant

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Ahhhh, so it's wasn't because the side was struggling with the new manager and new direction? No, it was cause Messi wasn't playing superhuman, feck me that's convenient.

They are shit when he plays because of him, they are amazing when he plays because of him. Turning that into a double win for Messi is impressive shit.
Huh? In most instances a team's fortunes are dependent on performances of their team's talisman. It's the same for Bruno here, Salah at Pool and Messi there. If that player is having an indifferent campaign (7 goals from 14 from the teams main goalscorer is average at best), its more than likely that the team will be struggling.

That had absolutely nothing with the side getting used the manager and the entire team getting better as the season progressed, nothing.

It was all Messi.

feck me can you hear yourself?
So, what you're telling me is years changed and *click* fortunes of the team changed completely? Every player got used to the manager's tactics? And this date conveniently happened to be round about the same time from when Messi started overachieving his xG numbers again?

Messi in the 1st half of the season was underperforming his xG - a rare thing as he most overachieves his xG by 10 goals or so. 2nd half of the season, he overachieved by 6 goals over 21 games (a feat that he produces more often than not).

FYI: Not sure if you believe in xG, but their xGD in the 1st half of the season was the best in the league as well, so Koeman was just unlucky then

Anyways, it's tiring discussing a hypothetical scenario
 

Dan-Utd

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I've always wondered why Barcelona put the most crazy release causes in contracts like 200m here, 400m there etc, seems rather unrealistic.

I think the pandemic thing is a bit of an excuse, for me, they knew they were in a financial mess when they sold Neymar, since then they've still failed to get organised and now find themselves really up against it.
 

Terranova

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I've always wondered why Barcelona put the most crazy release causes in contracts like 200m here, 400m there etc, seems rather unrealistic.

I think the pandemic thing is a bit of an excuse, for me, they knew they were in a financial mess when they sold Neymar, since then they've still failed to get organised and now find themselves really up against it.
because they have to, all players in la liga have them. So if you have to have one, you might as well have a rather unrealistic one, otherwise each player can be bought in an instance.
 
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So, what you're telling me is years changed and *click* fortunes of the team changed completely? Every player got used to the manager's tactics? And this date conveniently happened to be round about the same time from when Messi started overachieving his xG numbers again?
Yes the team bloody clicked, and a functioning confident team obviously helps Messi or any other talisman to increase his productivity.
 

Iker Quesadillas

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The main reason why Barcelona wouldn't really struggle too much to make top 4 is because there aren't enough good teams in La Liga to capitalize on their misfortune.
 

Maagge

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If a side is scoring almost 1 more goal with Messi than without him per 90, one would like to believe there is value in keeping him, especially when you compare the same stat for Griezmann and Dembele. Eventually Barcelona will find their feet and they're too get lost in the wilderness, but with it wouldn't be as easy a transition as people are expecting.
There won't really be a transition as long as they're throwing all their money at Messi though. He's the one they're supposed to transition from. You cannot do that when you can't even register the players you've gotten in on free transfers.
 

432JuanMata

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Barcelona are bad, but they aren't so bad as to not qualify for CL without Messi.

Come on, they were what, 15 points ahead of 5th place last season?
He was MOM in the league more games than he wasn’t so I wouldn’t be so confident. He is not just a goalscorer he is there main playmaker. For Christ sake they had Braitewaite up front for loads of games last season
 

thundercats

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Barcelona finished outside the top 4 just 7 times from 1950 onwards. That is 71 year. All 7 times they finished either 5th or 6th they will be perfectly fine without Messi
 

Morty_

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ROnaldo was scontributing to ~50% more goals than 2nd placed played (Benzema) in his last 2 seasons. For Messi, that number is closer to ~90-100% (Suarez and then Griezmann)

And they're a great side, but everything there has been built around a single player. Remember the start of the season, where Messi was playing more like a human? This elite team with Griezmann, Busquets, Alba, Frenkie was 6th or so after 15 odd games. So, let's not assume that great sides cannot collapse.
And they will adapt without Messi, if you give it some time.
You cant just look at Messi's goals and assists in isolation, now, i do reckon they will be worse without him, but not as much as it may seem.

Getting 3th or 4th doesnt take that much, if we are being honest, Barcelona can still be in shambles and make it, just look at RM the season in 18/19, a complete disaster yet made CL-spot easily enough.
 

dinostar77

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Barcelona finished outside the top 4 just 7 times from 1950 onwards. That is 71 year. All 7 times they finished either 5th or 6th they will be perfectly fine without Messi
Totally agreed. Any suggestion that Barcelona would struggle to qualify for CL without Messi is hilarious.
 

James Peril

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Arguable, but I really see them struggling for 4th place without Messi.

When Messi was on the pitch vs No Messi, GD difference was 0.89. Among all players who played >1000 minutes, there was none with a higher difference. For reference, the same number for Griezmann was -0.11 and for Dembele -0.25
Unintelligent argument. Obviously they’d struggle without Messi, just like every other club without their best player… but they’d buy another player and replace a lot of the numbers, just like every other team would do. And maybe others step up to replace some more, who knows.
 

RU Devil

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Interesting argument, but it ignores the fact that Barca cannot afford to keep or play said world class players. Griezmann needs to be gone & even if the rest of the high earners defer their payments, it's still a load on future years. 200 mil in savings won't be easy to stomach, whether it's deferrals or player sales. Deferrals will just eat into future transfer budgets/player salaries. Plus, the whole footballing world knows it so they won't get the top dollar for their outgoing players.
 

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Have they sold any important player? Whenever a club has financial crisis they need to sell some of their star players. I haven't seen any links to FDJ, Pedri, Fati, Messi etc. All I can see is that they are trying to offload some of their undesirable players like Dembele. I even read they were trying to take joao felix from Atletico. What they think of themselves? Too clever? Hope they face some actual punishment.
 

The United

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Did we have some fans who were envy of how clubs like Barca and Real were being operated because their fans somehow involved with their club management or something before?
 

Threesus

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The Qataris really did a number on Barcelona, huh. In their bid to recover from losing neymar, they have signed a lot of dross.

I heard that they still owe Liverpool about 70 million euros for coutinho . And they signed griezmann by taking a loan from a bank, IIRC.


Did we have some fans who were envy of how clubs like Barca and Real were being operated because their fans somehow involved with their club management or something before?
I think a balance is good. While not spending recklessly, we should also not replace a great player with players like obertan, bebe and Valencia.
 

iKnowNothing

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People in this thread saying Barca won’t make top 4 without Messi :lol:
Can you also name which teams you think can get the third and the fourth spot (assuming Real and Atleti get top two)?


Have they sold any important player? Whenever a club has financial crisis they need to sell some of their star players. I haven't seen any links to FDJ, Pedri, Fati, Messi etc. All I can see is that they are trying to offload some of their undesirable players like Dembele. I even read they were trying to take joao felix from Atletico. What they think of themselves? Too clever? Hope they face some actual punishment.
That’s what I’m wondering too. So far it looks more like a squad clear out rather than a fire sale. Maybe they’re working on getting more loans to cover operating costs?

It’s likely they’ll have a lot more revenue in the upcoming season if fans are back. If the revenue improves, they have a higher wage ceiling to work with next season etc.
 
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anant

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Unintelligent argument. Obviously they’d struggle without Messi, just like every other club without their best player… but they’d buy another player and replace a lot of the numbers, just like every other team would do. And maybe others step up to replace some more, who knows.
But the point here is that they cant buy anyone right now to replace him. If you want 200m worth of savings, and you're selling Messi, that alone isnt going to be enough. Griezmann, Dembele, etc. need to be sold regardless and the question then becomes would that side finish in top 3 or would they be in a fight for 4th.
Surely, people do realize he's worth additional 15 points over any decent player. Now, you're removing that player and not replacing him at all.
 

anant

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There won't really be a transition as long as they're throwing all their money at Messi though. He's the one they're supposed to transition from. You cannot do that when you can't even register the players you've gotten in on free transfers.
But you cant have that transition right now. They dont have money to replace him and thats what the argument is. They're effectively replacing Messi with more game time for Brathwaite