Lionel Messi is set to extend his stay at Barcelona by signing a new five-year deal, with the Argentine talisman set to take a  50 percent wage cut, La Vanguardia newspaper and ESPN reported on Wednesday.

Messi, Barca’s all-time top scorer and appearance maker, technically ended his 21-year association with the club last month and is currently a free agent after his previous contract expired.

“The player will reduce his wage by 50 percent. Now it just remains for the lawyers to look over the agreement and give it the OK. Once that happens (his) continuation will be official,” said Madrid-based sports daily Marca which confirmed L’Esportiu’s initial story.

According to the latter, Messi, 34, will earn in the region of 20 million euros basic next season with the Catalan club, which he has led to ten league crowns as well as four Champions Leagues.

Since Joan Laporta took over as Barca…

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