Ian McGarry: Man United have contacted Lionel Messi’s camp about potential deal
Manchester United would be interested in recruiting Lionel Messi this summer, according to a report
Manchester United have contacted Lionel Messi’s representatives about signing the FC Barcelona legend on a free transfer this summer, according to journalist Ian McGarry.
The Argentina international is available to sign for free in the current transfer market after FC Barcelona confirmed on Thursday night that Messi had played his final game for the club.
Although Messi was reported to be willing to accept a 50 per cent pay cut in order to facilitate a new deal with FC Barcelona, contract talks collapsed as the Spanish side blamed La Liga’s new financial rules.
The 34-year-old has regularly been linked with a move to Premier League champions Manchester City and Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain over the past couple of seasons.
However, the Citizens signed Jack Grealish in a British record £100m deal from Aston Villa on Thursday and Manchester City aren’t expected to enter the race for Messi’s signature.
Reports in Spain suggest that Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich is already working on a potential deal to sign the three-time Champions League winner this summer.
But Scottish journalist McGarry has revealed that Manchester United are in contention to sign Messi after holding talks with the Argentinian’s representatives.
McGarry told the Transfer Window podcast that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have offered him a contract after talking to his representatives.
It is said that United have offered the Argentine a deal worth £42m across two seasons.
McGarry said: “Paris Saint-Germain are in pole position with regards to securing Messi’s signature and are offering him a contract of around £63.5m (€75m) gross over two years, and then allowing him to leave for free.
“As we know, he has an ambition to play Major League Soccer in America and that would be something he would obviously be attracted to.
“However, Manchester United are also putting themselves in the frame.
“They don’t believe right now that they are as strong a candidate as PSG with regards to the player’s signature.
“However, terms have been spoken about with Messi’s representatives with regards to a contract, which would reach to around £42m (€50m) gross in terms of salary.
“And obviously there would be agent’s fees to his father Jorge as well as the signing-on fee and salary, which will be regarded in terms of Messi’s obvious worth and value in world football but also of course the commercial value of having Messi on your team can generate.
“I wonder if Manchester United might actually be a credible and more effective challenge for Leo Messi the player, rather than it being about the money.”
Messi has scored 683 goals in 810 games in all competitions over the past 17 seasons at FC Barcelona.
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