What Messi’s transfer request means for him, Barcelona and Manchester City – the Athletic

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(Additional contributors: David Ornstein, Sam Lee, James Horncastle, Paul Tenorio, Adam Crafton) Lionel Messi has asked to leave Barcelona after nearly two decades at the club, and sources close to the six-time Ballon d’Or winner say he has been in contact with Pep Guardiola and would like to move to Manchester City.

City distanced themselves significantly from a move for the 33-year-old, while Barcelona responded to Messi’s fax underlining his desire to leave saying they expected him to end his Camp Nou career .

It is clear that there are a lot of agendas at stake and politics surrounding what will happen next, with Barcelona coming out of a terrible season that ended in an 8-2 destruction at the hands of Bayern Munich and of the club sacking its trainer Quique Setien.

Once this decision was made, Ronald Koeman was appointed head coach and has already reportedly told several senior members of the squad, including Messi’s best …



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