LaLiga president Javier Tebas has defended Lionel Messi over Barcelona’s financial situation, claiming that it is due to the coronavirus pandemic and not the Argentine star.

Spanish newspaper El Mundo reported on Sunday that the 4-year deal Messi signed in 2017 is worth more than €555 million.

But Tebas wrote on Twitter: “Barcelona’s delicate financial situation is not Messi’s fault but the devastating effect of COVID-19. Without the pandemic, the income generated by the best player in history would prop up that expenditure. The sensationalism that surrounds the matter is unfair.”