Lionel Messi could finally be reunited with Pep Guardiola this summer if Manchester City agree to pay the Argentine £500,000 per week after tax, according to reports. The pair became legendary figures together at Barcelona, winning every possible trophy.
The Barca forward’s contract is set to expire this summer, a year after he believed he could leave for free.
Messi’s team reportedly insisted that a clause in his contract meant that the 33-year-could could depart the Camp Nou if he handed in a transfer request within a certain period. That put several clubs, including City, on alert.
However, La Liga blocked the move and he remained with the 26-times league champions.
Messi has gone on to score 29 goals in La Liga but Barca look set to miss out on another title. Ronald Koeman’s side are four points behind leaders Atletico Madrid with two matches to play.
Real Madrid are second, two points above Barca.
Messi scored an incredible 211 times in 219 games under Guardiola between 2009 and 2012. In total, he has made 777 appearances for Barcelona and scored 671 goals.
Last month, Guardiola played down a potential reunion. The 50-year-old suggested Messi should spend the rest of his career with Barcelona.
“I hope he can finish his career at Barca,” Guardiola told Spanish television channel TV3.
“The only thing that needs to be done, as our dear teacher (former Barca player and manager Johan Cruyff) said, is to go back to the origins, to rescue the cause of things, which makes Barca special in many things in the way they play.
“We know how to do it. The founding thing is already done. All you have to do is dust it off, put some oil on it, the nails, and do it again. There is no better club to do it.”