Barcelona presidential candidate Jordi Farre has revealed that, should he win the presidential race, he will aim to tie Lionel Messi down to a new deal at Camp Nou the day after the election.
Farre is one of a number of candidates standing for the Barcelona presidency, with the 2021 election moved forward to 24 January following Josep Maria Bartomeu's premature resignation.
The future of Messi has been a hot topic during the election campaign after the six-time Ballon d'Or winner handed in a transfer request in the summer.
The Argentinian was subsequently unable to force through an exit due to his €700m release clause, but his current deal expires in 2021.
"He is the best player in the history of football and we have to offer him an exciting project," said Farre [via Sport]. "We will be capable of motivating him and, the day after becoming president, I hope to have him renewed.
"Leo is a Cule and is waiting for a new board to see what project he's offered. What he wants is to be sold a dream, he needs that, and right now, not just the team, the club is sad and we need to give it a new impulse.
"I think Leo will stay, we have the capacity to offer him an exciting project, I want him to stay and he must be part of the club's future. I would dare to say that, if we win the elections, Leo will renew on Jan. 25."
Messi is Barcelona's top earner, pocketing a princely €565,000-per-week. The club have endured financial difficulties because of the coronavirus pandemic, and in November players agreed a €122m salary reduction over the next three years to attempt to recover from the financial impact of Covid-19.
At the start of December, interim president Carlos Tusquets admitted it would have made financial sense to sell the 33-year-old during the summer.