The former boss of Blaugrana has been strongly linked with an Argentine superstar for some time, and he is now at stake after leaving Camp Nou
Pep Guardiola has been questioned about Manchester City’s alleged interest in Lionel Messi now that a Barcelona icon has reached the free agency and will not sign a new contract at Camp Nou.
Talks over new terms at Camp Nou for a six-time Ballon d’Or winner broke, with financial problems in Catalonia preventing an agreement from being reached.
There is now a stir for the most coveted signatures, but City, which fits breaks British transfer record for Jack Grealish, does not intend to join the fight.
What was said?
Guardiola, who worked with Messi in Barcelona for four memorable years between 2008 and 2012, said of the speculation that he could watch a reunion take place: “We spent £ 40 million on Jack Grealish. We spent £ 100 million paid and brought in £ 60 million.
“He will wear the number 10 because we were convinced of Grealish and we were convinced that Leo would continue at Barcelona, so he does not think now.”
Why is Messi available?
A very high time that the exit hit once in 2020, which there is talk of interest at City, and hit free agency this summer when a lucrative contract expired.
Barca were hoping to implement an extension, with club chairman Joan Laporta agreeing at some point, but no paperwork could be signed and a record battle at Camp Nou is being finalized.
Guardiola adds the best player he has had the pleasure of working with: ‘It looked like it went well in terms of joining Barcelona. It was a surprise to everyone – me included.
“The president was clear today. I did not speak to the player or the president, so I do not know what happened, but as a supporter of the club I would like him to get there, but today I have to the club being sustainable and what happened over the past year was really not good.
‘As a fan, I’m incredibly grateful for the extraordinary player I’ve seen in my life, for the titles he has helped for Barcelona, for helping me personally to go to Munich and then to England.
‘More than that, the incredible amount of feelings and action in front of the TV and watching what he can do with the ball, with his teammates in one football match.
“Every day he made something unique every three days. All I can say is thank you so much for bringing Barcelona to another level so that Barcelona could dominate the world for a decade, and I wish him everything from best then for the last few years of his career.
“He will not be forgotten. Hopefully one day we can say the best, because he deserves it.
“If President Laporta shows up in this situation, he should do so unfortunately because someone has not done well before.