- Superstar Messi stalling on new contract at Nou Camp after fall-out with club President
- Frenchman Griezmann has struggled since £107 million move from Atletico Madrid
- See all odds and best bets for Messi and Griezmann futures and the next Barcelona coach
Barcelona’s fortunes picked up after two straight draws with a 4-1 victory against Villareal on Sunday but there is still unrest at the club centered on two of the team’s biggest stars, Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann.
Messi has made it clear he will not sign a new contract until the term in office of the current club president Josep Bartomeu, ends next year – with the player’s current deal also expiring in 2021.
Meanwhile, Griezmann has endured a troubled season since his £107 million move from Atletico Madrid and his goal in the defeat of Villareal was his first since February.
Odds for Messi to Leave Barcelona Before July 1, 2021
All odds taken July 6
Real Madrid currently lead Spain’s La Liga by four points with four games remaining and it seems likely that Barca will fail to lift the title for the first time in three seasons.
There have been widespread reports of unrest in the Catalan club’s dressing room with several players including Argentine Messi said to be at odds with the coach, Quique Setien, and his assistant, Eder Sarabia.
Lionel Messi will "end his working and footballing life at Barcelona", the club's president has said.
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) July 6, 2020
There are several special betting markets available with Messi priced at +125 to leave Barca by July 1, 2021 but rated much more likely to remain at the club at -175.
Meanwhile, Barcelona remain favorites to be Messi’s club – he has been with them since boyhood – after the summer of 2021 at -175.
Manchester City are next in the market at +300 followed by any Argentine club at +450 and Juventus and Inter Milan at +500.
French World Cup winner Griezmann’s prospects of remaining at the Nou Camp are not viewed so well, with the price for him to stay with the team set at -140.
Barcelona scored their 9000th goal yesterday. Lionel Messi has scored 7% of them 😳 pic.twitter.com/Sm6SNJ5Tqb
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) July 6, 2020
Paris Saint-Germain are rated at +175 to be his destination next season with Manchester United at +600.
With coach Setien under-fire and Barca having already sacked the unpopular Ernesto Valverde in January, there is also much speculation about who will be the head coach next season.
Former Barcelona playmaker Xavi Hernandez is currently coaching in Qatar and is the wide favorite for the job at -350 with Dutch former Barca hero Ronald Koeman – currently coaching the Netherlands national team at +800.
Pick: No -175
Odds for Messi’s Club After 2021 Summer Transfer Window
|Any Argentine Club||+450|
|Any MLS Club||+1400|
Messi, 33, has played 737 matches for Barcelona. He has scored 624 goals.
These stunning statistics and the aim of landing Barca’s first Champions League title since 2015 are behind his desire to remain at the club until the end of his career. They are still in this season’s suspended UCL last 16.
But he has fallen out seriously with current club President Bartomeu over a number of issues including the club’s failure to re-sign his friend Neymar from PSG last summer.
One thing is certain, however; Messi rules the roost at the club.
📊 — Lionel Messi is close to breaking Xavi Hernandez's LaLiga Santander assist record (20) for a single season. Messi's tally of 19 assists this season is his best in a Barcelona shirt. pic.twitter.com/38PrsmOnid
— Barça Universal (@BarcaUniversal) July 6, 2020
So any candidates to replace Bartomeu as President next summer will have to ensure that they have a good relationship with Messi and that they can get him to sign a new deal. Otherwise, there will be an uproar among the club’s millions of fans.
The Messi – Griezmann connection finally worked in Villarreal. The Frenchman completed one of the best games since playing at Barça and found his best partner in the Argentine star. [md] pic.twitter.com/bl2oQN2l9R
— barcacentre (@barcacentre) July 6, 2020
That makes it highly likely he will stay on his terms and with a friendly face at the head of the organization in the President’s role.
If he were to leave, the most likely destination would be Manchester City where his former boss at Barcelona, Pep Guardiola, is in charge. Even if Guardiola steps down in 2021, there is a Spanish hierarchy behind the scenes at City which would suit Messi.
Pick: Barcelona -175
Odds for Griezmann’s Club After Summer Transfer Window
|Stay at Barcelona||-140|
It has been a tough first season for Antoine Griezmann at the club and he had gone eight games without a goal before he hit the target against Villarreal.
He has scored just eight league goals and his family have claimed that he is ready to leave the club.
He, too, has a sour relationship with coach Setien who astonishingly said publicly that the Frenchman’s presence disrupts the team.
Reports have linked Griezmann with a move to the Premier League with either Manchester City or Manchester United. But as a Frenchman, Paris Saint-Germain would seem a favorable destination, too – although the challenge of league football in France is not so exciting.
Griezmann is 29 and after the coronavirus crisis, Barcelona would not be able to get a fee anywhere near what they paid for him.
Pick: Stay At Barcelona -140
Odds for Next Barcelona Manager
|Javier Garcia Pimienta||+1400|
|Nuno Espirito Santo||+2000|
|Erik Ten Hag||+2000|
|Marcelino Garcia Toral||+2000|
Xavi Hernandez is one of the all-time greats of Barcelona after winning the Champions League four times with the club.
He has made no secret of the fact that he wishes to return one day as manager. The suggestion in the city is that he is already nailed on to take the post once Setien departs.
Official: Barcelona's home kit for the 2020-21 season. [nike] pic.twitter.com/jocOCoRS2d
— barcacentre (@barcacentre) July 6, 2020
With Barca probably requiring a re-group if Real Madrid wins the title, the time will be perfect for him to take the Barca job this summer.
He is currently in charge of the Al Hadd club in Qatar and led them to the semifinals of the Asian Champions League last year.
Koeman said he received a call from Barcelona when Valverde was fired but has said he wants to lead the Dutch team at the delayed European Championships next summer.
Pick: Xavi Hernandez -350