Barcelona have been warned they will have to drastically reduce costs before they can afford to sign Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund.
The Camp Nou side hope to compete with Real Madrid and Manchester City for the signing of the 21-year-old striker.
However, they are still in a dire financial situation and have been given a negative spending limit by La Liga.
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What has been said?
A presentation from La Liga on Monday confirmed that the Catalan club have a spending limit of -€144 million (-£121m/-$158m), down from a limit of €98m (£82m/$108m) from last year.
Barcelona are the only team in the top-flight to have been handed a negative ceiling, with rivals Real Madrid at the other end of the spectrum with a maximum of €739m (£622m/$812m).
Asked about the club's hopes of signing Haaland, La Liga director general Javier Gomez told reporters: "To make signings, Barcelona have to reduce the costs they have now or bring in more income. There's no other way.
"Barcelona's losses are greater than their capacity to bring in income. That's why [the spending limit] is negative."
He added: "Until [Barca] recover the net worth that they've lost, the only way they can spend is with the 1:4 rule, where if you save €10m, you can spend €2.5m.
"The only way for Barcelona to sign is by making savings on [player] contracts, until they generate income."
Laporta reluctant to put Barca at risk
President Joan Laporta admitted on Sunday that his side would not risk going further into financial trouble to bring in Haaland this year.
Asked about a move for the Norway international, he said: "We are here to manage a football club well. We are in a period that, although we are improving economically, it has not yet been solved.
"The economic situation has not been reversed and that is the priority.
"It is clear that we want an increasingly powerful team. We will go all out, but we will not do any operation that puts the institution at risk."
Where could Haaland end up?
Reports in England claim Manchester City have emerged as the favourites to get Haaland.
The Daily Mail claims the Premier League side have a deal in place worth a total of around £100m ($130m) to sign him, including his £63m ($82m) release clause and fees to agent Mino Raiola.
Madrid have also been linked with a move for the attacker, but they are also said to be set to snap up Kylian Mbappe from Paris Saint-Germain.
GOAL reported this month that Barca are convinced Madrid will bring Mbappe to the Spanish top-flight, causing the Blaugrana to increase their efforts to get Haaland, but La Liga's Monday announcement has put their hopes in trouble.