The 34 year-old's contract at Barcelona expired at the start of July, meaning that at present and despite the feeling at the Camp Nou offices, Lionel Messi is a free agent and open to talks with any potential suitor.
One of those clubs will undoubtedly be Manchester City, who chased the signature of the player for several weeks last summer, when Messi himself seemed destined on departing Barcelona due to disagreements with former president Josep Maria Bartomeu.
However, despite there being confidence that Barcelona will re-sign Lionel Messi in the coming weeks, the latest reports from Spain indicate that two teams are waiting on the sidelines should there be a dramatic change of events.
According to the information of Mundo Deportivo, both Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are 'keeping a close eye' on the situation concerning Lionel Messi, with the intention of pouncing should the Barcelona legend decide to turn his back on Joan Laporta's contract proposals.
However, unlike last season, Mundo Deportivo report that Manchester City will not be 'proactive'.
It is reported that if at some point the player becomes available, then the Premier League champions will enter the race having already informed the player previously that they have the economic capacity and the option of playing first in Manchester and then in New York.
Pep Guardiola is known to be keen on a reunion with Lionel Messi at the Etihad Stadium, and the Argentine has been a long-term target for Manchester City and their wealthy backers.
However, there is a feeling at the Camp Nou that everything surrounding a new deal is all but completed, with Joan Laporta saying on the situation during a recent interview with La Sexta, "Everything is going well."
The latest details from the ever-reliable Fabrizio Romano were that Lionel Messi’s contract extension with Barcelona is 'finally coming', with both parties feeling ‘confident’ to officially announce the agreement until June 2023.
It is stated that both parties involved in the deal are working to fix ‘final details’ on contract clauses.
This one isn't looking very likely at all, and everything points towards Lionel Messi remaining at Barcelona for the final few years of his top-level career. But one can dream, right?
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