Barcelona president Sandro Rosell has this afternoon insisted that Lionel Messi is superior to perennial La Liga rival Cristiano Ronaldo and deserves to earn more than his Real Madrid nemesis.
Rumours over a lucrative new contract for Messi at the Camp Nou continue to be circulated as we head into the January transfer window, although his current contract with Barca currently runs until 2018.
Rosell has dismissed speculation that talks over a bumper wage increase are ongoing between Messi and Barca chiefs, but did adamantly claim that the Argentine maestro must command a higher salary than Ronaldo to match his worth to La Liga's reigning champions.
He told RAC1: “I have not spoken to him but the office door is open because Messi has to be the highest paid player in the world.
“That is for the fact that he is the best player in the world.”
Messi and Ronaldo consistently go head-to-head for every individual honour at the top of world football and this year has been no exception, as both men wait to find out if they will beat Franck Ribery and Zlatan Ibrahimovic to be named Ballon d'Or winner in January.
Barca may struggle to reward Messi with a deal better than Ronaldo's when talks over fresh terms do eventually get underway, with the Portuguese star's current contract reportedly worth in the region of £14.25m per year.