Barcelona forward Lionel Messi would love to be reunited with Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas at the Nou Camp next season.
The pair played together in Barca's youth team and the Catalan club, having already signed Spain striker David Villa from Valencia, have now made the 23-year-old their priority this summer. Barca have already had a bid turned down by the Gunners, but negotiations are set to continue in the coming weeks and Messi hopes a deal can be agreed.
"I would like to play with Cesc again because I know him like (Gerard) Pique (from the youth team)," he told Sport in an interview.
"We shared many things at that moment, when we coincided in Barca's youth team, and I know what he can give on the pitch."
Messi played with Pique in that same team before the stylish defender moved to Manchester United.
Pique has now been back at Barca for two years, and Messi hopes Fabregas will also return.
"It would be special to be reunited with Cesc in the same team, in the same way that it happened with Pique when he returned from his spell at Manchester United," he said.
Messi has not put his former team-mate under any pressure to sign for Barca, but the two remain in contact and the Argentinian is sure Fabregas wants to return to the Nou Camp.
"We're in contact," he added. "We speak and sometimes we send each other messages. He wants to come to Barcelona and we're all waiting to see what will happen. I hope he ends up coming and that we can play together again.
"Nobody imagined that one day we could all be together in Barcelona's first team, especially when Cesc and Pique left. For us to be together again would be special, a lovely situation for those of us that were there back then."
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