Lionel Messi should have been sold last summer to help with the club's current financial issues, that's according to current interim president Carlos Tusquets.
Neymar dropped a bombshell on Wednesday as he followed up scoring twice for Paris Saint-Germain in their 3-1 Champions League win over Manchester United by revealing his desire to reunite with Lionel Messi next season.
The six time Ballon d'Or victor tried to leave on a free but the club stopped him and La Liga agreed his clause to end his contract wasn't valid, which stopped a potential move to Manchester City.
"From an economic point of view, I would have sold Messi this summer", Tusquets told Catalan radio Rac1.
Messi made a decision to stay until the end of his contract, in summer 2021, when he will be able to leave for nothing.
Barca moved quickly to make the Argentine aware that a release clause in his contract was no longer valid, forcing the 33-year-old to reassess his options and agree to stay put. But that is something that would have had to have been absolutely agreed with the coaching staff.
Ex-Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu resigned in October rather than face a vote of no confidence, with Tusquets taking temporary charge until January's elections. La Liga requires wage limits'.
Barcelona have been desperately searching for ways to ease their financial troubles and just recently reached an agreement in principle with their players to implement wage cuts which will save the club a staggering £109m.
But it appears they have an extremely hard task on their hands to persuade Messi to remain in Barcelona after he went on the attack against his club once again last month.
And Barca finally announced an agreement had been reached which will save £109m - yet with the club also deferring £45m of variable payments over a three-year period on top of that, it still falls short of the £170m figure the club has always been targeting to save via player salaries.
"If he (Neymar) became available on a free transfer then maybe we could think about signing him", he said.