Barcelona chief talks about potential for Lionel Messi to move to England

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has poured cold water on reports stating that Lionel Messi may well be tempted by a move to the Premier League.

With Pep Guardiola taking over at Manchester City next season and expected to splurge on new players, the current Ballon d’Or holder has been touted as a potential new face at the Etihad Stadium.

Messi was a key figure in Guardiola’s Barca side that won a momentous 14 trophies in four glorious years for the now Bayern Munich boss.

Despite the close bond between player and coach, Bartomeu has stated that the Argentina international superstar will not be moving to England or any other clubs in Europe.

“Messi said a few days ago ‘‘Barcelona will be the only European club that I play for’’,” the Blaugrana chief told The Daily Mail.

“So if someone is interested in Messi, forget it. He said this. I didn’t say it. He said this.”

City have also attracted Ferran Soriano and Txiki Begiristain from Camp Nou, with scope for a number of Barcelona players to be tempted with a move to the English side.

However, it appears that the dream of seeing whether Messi can cut it on a cold Tuesday night in Stoke will not happen.