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SBD Global/July 25, 2012/International Football

With Messi Unable To Play In Hamburg Friendly, Barça Forced To Pay $484K

FC Barcelona striker Lionel Messi missed Tuesday's friendly against Bundesliga side Hamburg SV, costing his club €400,000 ($484,000), according to Moisés Llorens of AS. Messi missed the match after he "suffered a contusion" while training in the days leading up to the friendly. A clause in the contract with the German side stipulates that Messi's absence would cost Barça €400,000. That money will be used by Hamburg "to compensate their fans" for Messi's absence (AS, 7/24). MARCA's Sergi Font. reported that Messi's absence "would be very expensive" for Barcelona. The contract between the two sides had Barça taking in €1.2M ($1.45M), but without Messi that figure "decreases by 30% or more." That means the club will lose out on between €360,000 ($435,672) and €500,000 ($605,100) (MARCA, 7/24). MUNDO DEPORTIVO's José Luis Artús noted that Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova felt bad for the Hamburg fans who were looking forward to seeing Messi play. Vilanova said, "I feel bad for the people of Hamburg. I feel bad that they can't see Messi, but he would be taking a risk. The injury is not bad, and we hope that he will be ready for the match against Tanger on Saturday" (MUNDODEPORTIVO, 7/24).
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