Barcelona captain Lionel Messi has urged Paris Saint-Germain winger Neymar to join him at Manchester City, according to reports by ESPN. The report suggests that the Argentine talisman has informed Neymar that he is moving to the Etihad and has asked the Brazilian to join him.
However, a move for the duo will hinge on Manchester City's ability to navigate the FFP rules, which they were accused of breaching in February. Neymar reached the UEFA Champions League final with PSG this season but ultimately lost to Bayern Munich.
Neymar could join Lionel Messi at Manchester City
Manchester City appear to be in pole position to land Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi after the Argentine decided to activate the clause in his contract which allows him to leave the club on a free transfer at the end of each season.
Former Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola has already spoken to his former prodigy and has discussed the possibility of bringing him to the Etihad.
The Citizens finished second in the Premier League last season, a substantial 18 points behind Liverpool. Guardiola has already secured the signing of Ferran Torres from Valencia and Nathan Ake from Bournemouth in a bid to close the gap on the Merseysiders next season.
However, the addition of a player of the calibre of Lionel Messi could propel the Manchester side to new heights and earn Guardiola the elusive Champions League trophy, which he last managed to secure in 2011 with Barcelona.
There are still complications related to the deal, but with the City Football Group's resources backing them, the Manchester outfit might be one of few clubs which could tempt the 33-year-old ace.
Barcelona still remain hopeful of keeping Messi despite their captain refusing to join the pre-season training as he prepares for a move.
Newly-appointed Sporting Director Ramon Planes reiterated the message, stating that they want to keep Lionel Messi at the club, despite their differences.
"The president and I have said many times, is to think of Leo Messi for the future of Barça, to build a winning cycle together with the best player in history. Our idea is to build a team around the best player in the world.
"We do not contemplate any contractual exit, because we want Messi to stay. Internally we are working for long hours to find the best solution for the club and for Leo."Published 27 Aug 2020, 15:17 IST