We all know how the Messi transfer saga played out over the off-season and with the Argentine staying within the club’s ranks, he would be charged with returning the Catalan outfit to the top step of the LaLiga ladder.

However, it is has not been the best of starts for new manager Ronald Koeman and with this Barcelona squad being arguably one of the weakest that has been on display in the past decade or so, defeat in the most recent edition of El Clasico would have been hard to stomach.

Hard to stomach for a team that has failed to find its early season ignition spark and hard to stomach for a group of supporters who were ready to table a vote of no confidence in the presidency of Josep Bartomeu.

To the point where the 57-year-old did not want to take the risk of being the first ever Barcelona president to be ushered out in such a way and instead of waiting for the vote to confirm his fate, he confirmed his fate for himself.

An announcement of his resignation was one that sent shockwaves across the footballing world and even though he would ultimately fall on his sword, his tenure still had time for one last dramatic act to be carried out.

An act that sees Barcelona sign up for the newly-mooted European Super League in principle and when you consider the financial issues that are being reported at such a sporting institution, you can quickly understand why.

Not only did last season comprise of a campaign that saw no silverware collected for the first time since 2007/08, but an eye-watering loss of €97 million was also posted and for a many, this is the straw that ultimately broke the camel’s back.

When you consider the scores of millions that the club have spent in recent times, you can comfortably say that largesse expenditure has not been converted into genuine return on investment.

Expenditure that has most come in the form of a trio of expensive flops and with Antoine Griezmann, Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho all failing to live up to their hefty price tags, it has meant the well is finally starting to run dry at the Camp Nou.

With finances at an all-time low and the constant pressures that come with a global pandemic, a rebuild job is now the realm of wishful thinking and with their famous La Masia academy not having the output that it did 10-15 years ago, the Catalan outfit are in something of a negative spiral.

Which is why the allure of a big money offer is too good to turn down and although the prospect of a European Super League is far from being rubberstamped, should it ever become a reality, the 2015 Champions League winners will be at the front of the queue.

Of course, this final announcement from Barcelona’s outgoing president has not been met with universal praise and with LaLiga’s own chief Javier Tebas claiming that “(this) confirms his ignorance about the football industry”, there might not be many tears shed over Bartomeu’s shock departure.

Written by Dan Tracey

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