Pep Guardiola responds to reports of Man City's 'huge bid' for Lionel Messi

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So, in case you hadn't heard, Lionel Messi finally put pen to paper over a new deal with Barcelona, tying him to the Catalan club until 2021.

The Argentine superstar was in the last year of his deal as we approached January and if he hadn't signed, he would have been free to negotiate with club's outside of Spain come the new year.

But, the 30-year-old has opted to remain in a place where he is viewed as virtually a God.

He's Barca's record goal scorer and assister, winning every trophy available during his time there.

Nevertheless, for a while, it seemed a real possibility that he may choose a different challenge in the latter stages of his career, with Manchester City touted as a potential destination.

A reunion with Pep Guardiola - the man who helped his career so much - played a significant part in the rumours being churned out.

Reports from Spain suggested that City and Sheikh Mansour wanted to take him as a free agent and were prepared to offer him a mouth-watering £88m signing-on fee.

But, was the bid real? Well, Guardiola has now responded to the claims.



Speaking ahead of their Champions League tie versus Shakhtar Donetsk, he said: "Lionel Messi has signed a contract one week ago. It was never going to happen.

"Messi started his career there and he's going to finish it there.

"If he wanted to leave, he wouldn't have signed the contract."

Asked specifically about City's reported bid, Guardiola added: "It's not true."

Well, that pretty much settles it.


The hypothetical question we can now ask is, where would Messi fit into Guardiola's all-conquering City side?

The Argentine would, of course, have been in the starting XI, but it would certainly have been difficult to have left either David Silva, Kevin de Bruyne, Leroy Sane or Raheem Sterling out of the team.

The Premier League leaders will likely dip into the transfer market in January to further strengthen their quest for silverware, with Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez set to be their primary target once again.

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Raheem Sterling
Kevin De Bruyne
La Liga
David Silva
Manchester City
Lionel Messi

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