Both Sergio Aguero and Yaya Toure have called for Lionel Messi to join Manchester City, if he should decide his future lies away from Barcelona.
The Argentine forward is regarded by many as the best player in the world, which he has been recognised as in each of the past three years. He has again been nominated for the Ballon d’Or this year, yet due to the form of Cristiano Ronaldo, he is expected to miss out to the Real Madrid and Portugal ace when the winner is announced in January.
By this time Messi will be setting his sights on retaining the La Liga title with Barca, who will also have one eye on their UEFA Champions League 16 match with City. Yet if Aguero and Toure have their way, the 26-year-old will in the future be plying his trade at the Etihad Stadium on a regular basis, rather than his current home of Camp Nou.
Messi has recently been involved in a spat with Barca’s economic vice-president Javier Faus, who had claimed the player didn’t deserve a pay rise. He responded by claiming the club official knew nothing about football, and although this argument has since been played down, it has led to speculation that he could seek a transfer in the future.
City are one of a small handful of teams who would likely be able to offer the world record fee of at least £100million to land Messi, and Aguero would love to see his compatriot pitch up in Manchester: “Yes, he should come to City. Then we’ll definitely play together. City should buy him.” Toure, meanwhile, played with Messi in Catalonia, and he told the Manchester Evening News: “If it’s to come to City, I hope Messi can leave Barca.”
Messi is under contract at Barca until the summer of 2018, and despite his falling out with Faus, it would still be a major surprise if he were to leave before this date. Indeed, it would be something a surprise if he hasn’t wrapped up a new contract long before his current deal expires, as the club are eager for him to remain for the rest of his career.