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Messi, Ronaldo La Liga exit would be 'bigger blow' than Neymar - Tebas

Messi, Ronaldo La Liga exit would be 'bigger blow' than Neymar - Tebas
From ESPN - November 15, 2017

La Liga president Javier Tebas acknowledges that Neymar's summer departure from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain has had an effect on La Liga, but claims it would be a "bigger blow" for Spain's top flight to lose Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo.

PSG broke the world transfer record by signing Neymar from Barcelona for 222 million in August.

Tebas has been highly critical of PSG's summer spending and recently accused the French giants of infringing financial fair play rules.

French Football Federation president Noel Le Graet has defended PSG's spending policy and claimed that other clubs and leagues are jealous.

Asked how Neymar's departure impacted La Liga, Tebas told Europa Press: "Not so much. La Liga is above players. Messi and Cristiano are the ones that have grown it and the ones that have made us what we are today because they have been with us for many years. Their departure would be a bigger blow."

Recently voted the Best FIFA Men's Player for the second year running, Ronaldo is in his ninth season at Real Madrid.

The Portugal captain signed a five-year contract extension a year ago to remain at the Santiago Bernabeu until June 2021. The 32-year-old, who joined Madrid from Manchester United for 94 million in the summer of 2009, said it would not be his "last contract as a player."

Reports in Spain claim that Ronaldo wants to leave Madrid at the end of the season because he is "disappointed" with the new contract offer the Spanish club have presented him.

"He's got a contract signed for many years and he signed it to fulfil it," Tebas said of Ronaldo. "I do not know, it seems like this is the 19th time that they [the media] say that he is going. I am not going to discuss this."

Tebas, meanwhile, says there is no danger of seeing Messi leave Barcelona any time soon.

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