City player-plus-cash Messi claims rejected

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Barcelona have dismissed claims Manchester City made an audacious bid for Lionel Messi.

The Citizens spending-power is well publicised, and despite a 'quiet' summer at the Etihad Stadium, Roberto Mancini still spent big to bring Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri to the club.

However, a mega-money offer for Messi would have been a stunning statement of intent from Manchester City, but one which Barca deny was ever made.

"Our policy is not to sell our stars but on this subject it certainly did not (happen)," vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu told Sport.

Spanish reports had claimed a €50 million offer plus Mario Balotelli was on the table, although that speculative figure would have been some way off the La Liga club's valuation and minimum fee release clause for the player had Manchester City made the move.


It's unlikely Pep Guardiola would even be willing to consider the possibility of letting such a prized asset leave the club though, and whilst the manager's future remains in doubt, Messi's does not.

"The decision lies with Pep but we hope to go on with him on the bench," Bartomeu concluded in relation to the manager.

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