Guardiola Responds To Messi Transfer Speculation

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has dismissed speculation linking the club with Lionel Messi.

Messi’s future at Barcelona has been thrown into jeopardy after the Argentine publicly criticised sporting director Eric Abidal this week.

The row between the pair comes with Messi able to leave the club for free in the summer should he wish due to a clause in his contract.

Reports have claimed Manchester City have ‘belief’ they have one last chance to potentially land Messi in the summer, albeit acknowledging their chances are slim.

And Guardiola now says he has no desire to sign the Argentinian superstar as he wants him to finish his career at the Nou Camp.

Speaking at his press conference ahead of their game with West Ham, Guardiola said: “He’s a player for Barcelona, he will stay there, that is my wish.

“I’m not going to talk about players for another club. I think he’s going to finish his career there, it’s my wish.”

Abidal had angered Messi by appearing to suggest in an interview with Catalan newspapers that the players were responsible for the dismissal of Ernesto Valverde.

Messi hit back publicly with an Instagram post directed at Abidal where he urged the sporting director to “name the players” he thought responsible for Valverde’s sack.

The public spat plunged the club into crisis and their ouster from the Copa Del Rey has made matters worse and heighten speculation about the future of Barca’s record goalscorer.