Manchester United Targeting Ambitious Move for Lionel Messi

James Cormack
Lionel Messi has told Barcelona that he wants to leave the club this summer
Lionel Messi has told Barcelona that he wants to leave the club this summer / RAFAEL MARCHANTE/Getty Images
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Manchester United are reportedly working swiftly on a deal which would see Barcelona's Lionel Messi make the switch to Old Trafford.

After weeks of discontent, Messi finally expressed his desire to leave Barça to the club's hierarchy on Tuesday, stating via fax that'll activate a clause to unilaterally end his contract this summer.

Messi's Barcelona were on the receiving end of their worst European defeat in history against Bayern earlier this month
Messi's Barcelona were on the receiving end of their worst European defeat in history against Bayern earlier this month / Pool/Getty Images

Messi's relationship with the club has deteriorated significantly over the past 12 months, particularly with president Josep Maria Bartomeu, and La Blaugrana's 8-2 humiliation at the hands of Bayern Munich appears to be the final straw.

The monumental news was destined to spark an overwhelming amount of debate and rumours regarding the Argentine's future destination if he was to depart Catalonia. But, interestingly, Cuatro's report of United's interest in Messi surfaced before the update.

The Spanish outlet claims officials from United have put the 'machinery in motion’ to bring the 33-year-old to Old Trafford.

The source believes the Red Devils are one of the few clubs blessed with the financial capacity to fund a deal for the Argentine. Although, this appears nothing short of a fantasy.

Reports have emerged of Messi's gargantuan salary at Barcelona - believed to be just shy of £1m-a-week - and it seems incredibly far-fetched for United to a pursue a deal for the great one when they're seemingly unwilling to splurge £108m to bring priority target Jadon Sancho to the club this summer.

Nevertheless, the source notes Messi's preferred destination would be Old Trafford, and they state the Red Devils could lay down a two-year deal for the 33-year-old.

Alongside United, Manchester City, big-spenders Chelsea, Inter and David Beckham's Inter Miami have been touted as potential destinations for Messi.

A reunion with Pep Guardiola at City has emerged as the early favourite, with previous reports suggesting the club were willing to pay whatever it takes to bring the six-time Ballon d'Or winner to the Etihad this summer.

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