Barcelona’s dressing room is an inharmonious place at the present after a quartet of first-team stars penned new contracts with the club.
The president has already claimed the Catalan giants have bee worse affected by the coronavirus crisis. In July he claimed his side had “lost out on €200m”.
Marca later outlined the club’s financial figures, showing that club had risen from €217m in June 2019 to €488m in June 2020.
This year’s budget has been reduced by 25%, which has led Bartomeu to propose a reduction of 30% in staff wages.
Marca claim the plan is to “reduce the salary of the players in these first years and put it in the last seasons of the contract”. Not ideal for the moneyman picking up the contracts at the club in three or four years time.
The report claims “most” of the squad were unwilling to agree to that with Frenkie De Jong, Clement Lenglet, Gerard Pique and Marc-Andre Ter Stegen named.
Those players were among those who signed a letter refusing to accept a wage reduction. The quartet are believed to have gone against the wishes of the club.
However, on Tuesday night the club announced the quartet had agreed new, extended deals with the club.
As a trade off for a loss of earnings it appears the players have all got extensions.
Pique has now got a deal until 2024, Stegen until 2025 and De Jong and Lenglet both until 2026. However, all “include a temporary salary adjustment”.
On Wednesday the club will begin to negotiate the salary reduction of all their employees. Marca though state “the group’s unity is broken” with the quartet negotiating on their own.
The outlet claim Bartomeu “has used the old divide and rule tactic”.
Whether or not the unrest enters the field remains to be seen. Just how the rest of the squad will see four players looking after themselves and not working as a group is yet unclear.