If Manchester City sign Lionel Messi from Barcelona, it’s safe to assume Pep Guardiola’s side will become the overwhelming favourites with the bookmakers to win the 2020-21 Premier League title.
City, who finished 18 points behind champions Liverpool last season, are reportedly ‘optimistic’ about signing Messi.
Messi wants to leave Barcelona and City are currently in pole position seal the Argentina international’s signature ahead of Paris Saint-Germain and Inter Milan.
Manchester United legend Wayne Rooney is in no doubt that Messi would be a superstar in the Premier League.
The former England captain says Messi is one of the only players he’s ever been in awe of and believes he’s the greatest footballer of all time, ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo.
“I know he’s getting older but he’s a player who no one has seen before,” Rooney told talkSPORT on Thursday.
“Messi has everything – he can create goals, score goals, dictate the game and is the best player of all time.
“He’s one of the only players I’ve sat there and watched and been in awe.”
Rooney continued: “Him and Cristiano Ronaldo have set a standard which I don’t think we will ever see again but, for me, Messi is just different level.”
Rooney also believes that Messi could win a record-breaking seventh Ballon d’Or alongside Kevin De Bruyne at Man City or Bruno Fernandes at Manchester United.
“The United States shouldn’t be in his mind because he’s too good,” he added.
“He could come to the Premier League and be a Player of the Year. One million per cent.
“If he surrounds himself with Bruno Fernandes or Kevin De Bruyne he could win a seventh Ballon d’Or, which would be incredible.”
However, Rooney feels that Liverpool will win next season’s Premier League title, regardless if City land Messi, if Jurgen Klopp’s side manage to sign Thiago Alcantara from Bayern Munich.
“I think it is City or Liverpool,” Rooney said, per talkSPORT's live blog, when asked about the 2020-21 Premier League title race.
“Chelsea are making a lot of signings, some good signings.
“Man United have a lot of potential in the players they have got but I still think they are a year away.
“Chelsea with the new signings will possibly need a year to get everyone on the same songsheet.
“So I do think it is between City and Liverpool. And if Liverpool get Thiago from Bayern Munich, I think it is done [the title].
“That is a better signing than Messi going to Man City.”
Thiago to Liverpool an even better signing than Messi to Man City? That’s a massive shout, Wayne.
Messi, even at the age of 33, could be a game-changing signing for City. He’s still the world’s best footballer who produces magical moments almost every time he takes to a football pitch.
Thiago is certainly special, but the Spanish midfielder is obviously nowhere near Messi’s level.
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