"We offered Messi triple his salary; he refused it" - Man City
The president of Premier League champions Manchester City, Khaldoon Al Mubarak, admitted that he asked Pep Guardiola to convince the Argentine to join. City deny this happened.
Lionel Messi is the forbidden fruit for every club in the world it would appear, with a manager he knows and respects, and the offer of three times his salary, not enough to take him from FC Barcelona to Manchester City.
Messi refused triple his Barça salary
"We asked [Pep] Guardiola to talk to him. We offered him triple the salary he has at Barcelona, but he never accepted it," said Khaldoon al Mubarak, the president of the reinging Premier League champions, referring to an objective in 2016.
The admission came from Al Mubarak while speaking at a media conference in the United Arab Emirates. There he was asked who the one player the club would have loved to have signed but hadn't. As he replied with the name of the five-time Ballon d'Or winner, a number of laughs could be heard in the auditorium.
Although there had been some murmurs of Messi potentially not extending his contract with LaLiga giants Barça in 2017, he did eventually sign on the dotted line. There could, however, be an option to leave in 2020...if City are still interested!
Manchester City deny incident
Manchester City later denied their president said any such thing, although have admitted they were interested in the Argentinean player.