We all knew Lionel Messi has been raking in the money and to be honest, the eye-watering numbers that have since been leaked by El Mundo over the past weekend are not what are actually shocking.

The fact that they have is what will have caught the eye and Fabrizo Romano may have put it expertly when he said: “What a bomb.” A little different to his “Here we go!” catchphrase that he probably coined from Super Mario, but a catchphrase that could stick. It would have certainly raised eyebrows at match-bonus-code.co.uk as no-one would have expected it to have been dropped!

Anyway, there is no doubt that FC Barcelona would have been desperate to keep their superstar as happy as possible when offering him contracts in the past, therefore it probably should not come as a surprise that he is earning €555,237,619 over the duration of the deal. That works out at being €138 million per season, plus all of the additional money that he will earn from bonuses. A loyalty bonus of just under €78 million was handed, whilst he was handed a bonus of €115,225,000 to renew his deal.

Having hit his 650th goal for the club, a thread appeared on Twitter justifying the wages that FC Barcelona are believed to be paying him, by suggesting that he actually generates more money for the club than he is paid.

@ManagingBarca provided a detailed thread that suggested that the Argentine brought in a lot more money than what he was alleged to be paid. They look at his 2 million shirt sales each season, his ticket sales contribution, the media rights and sponsorships brought in, his transfer value and the social media income that is provided.

It is believed Messi generates around €145 million each year; so slightly higher than the alleged €138 million he earns. We say alleged, as FC Barcelona continue to dispute it and deny it.

In a statement, they wrote:  “FC Barcelona categorically denies any responsibility for the publication of this document, and will take appropriate legal action against the newspaper El Mundo, for any damage that may be caused as a result of this publication.

“FC Barcelona expresses its absolute support for Lionel Messi, especially in the face of any attempt to discredit his image, and to damage his relationship with the entity where he has worked to become the best player in the world and in football history.”

Nonetheless, having a player like Lionel Messi can only help generate further income as his performances on the pitch will provide the club with chances to cash in, whether it be in merchandise, club tickets, competition revenue or sponsorships. Imagine if he left…