Lionel Messi was reportedly branded a “hormonal dwarf” and “sewer rat” by former Barcelona directors in leaked WhatsApp messages.

Lionel Messi reportedly left Barcelona for Paris Saint-Germain upon the expiry of his contract in 2021. However, Barcelona chiefs were left infuriated by a press leak that shared details of the contract offered to Messi, which would have seen him net almost $611 million prior to his exit from Barcelona, the Mirror reported.

Spanish outlet El Periodico revealed messages that were allegedly sent in a group chat between the club's former hierarchy on Jan. 31, 2021.

The chat the messages were sent in included ex-president Josep Bartomeu, CEO Òscar Grau, directors Pancho Schroder and Javier Sobrino, executives Jordi Moix, Oriol Tomàs, and David Bellver and legal chief Roman Gomez Ponti.

"Barto, really, you can't be such a good person with this sewer rat."

"The club has given him everything and he has dedicated himself to marking a dictatorship of signings, transfers, renewals, sponsorships just for him, etc," legal chief Roman Gomez Ponti said in the chat.

Ponti ranted about Messi's power at the club and how he demanded new deals for team-mates Luis Suarez and Jordi Alba. He also ranted about the renewal fee for Ansu Fati's contract, which went to Messi's brother and agent Rodrigo, the Sun reported.

Ponti also sent messages about "blackmail" and Messi's lack of support as the Covid-19 pandemic hit.

"And above all the accumulation of blackmail and rudeness that the club and those who work have suffered from this hormonal dwarf that owes Barça life ... ah!

"But when they come badly given (pandemic) you receive the mythical WhatsApp: 'presi, lower the salary to others, but do not touch me and Luis," Ponti added.

Ponti also blasted Messi as a "pesetero," meaning money-grabber.

"Many times we have listened to Leo, not always, but many times, and this contract without a pandemic was totally acceptable," Bartomeu wrote in a later message. 

Bartomeu went on to say that it represented 15% of the club’s entire budget and that "it was correct taking into account everything that he generates.”

The chats also contained insults directed at Gerard Pique and current club president Joan Laporta. Laporta was re-elected for a second tenure two months after the exchanges.