Barcelona have made a ‘formal offer’ to sign Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero in an attempt to persuade Lionel Messi to remain at the club.
Messi’s future has been the subject of intense speculation after he handed in a transfer request last summer. Although ultimately unable to depart Camp Nou in 2020 due to his lofty release clause, his contract expires in June 2021 and as things stand, he is poised to leave Barcelona for free this summer.
Newly-elected Barcelona president Joan Laporta had preserving Messi’s Barcelona future front and centre of his election campaign, due to his existing relationship with the forward following his previous tenure as club president.
The pair are long-term international teammates and friends, winning the Under-20 World Cup together in 2005, making their senior Argentina debuts as teenagers within 13 months of one another and playing for Argentina’s Olympic gold medal-winning team in 2008.
Aguero’s Manchester City contract also expires in June 2021, and the report states that Laporta has made a ‘formal offer’ to the 32-year-old striker.
Aguero – City’s all-time top scorer – has been limited to just seven Premier League appearances this season due to injury, and on Tuesday Pep Guardiola revealed that he will carefully consider the striker’s future during March’s international break.
“Maybe I will think about it when the international break starts and I have more time,” Guardiola said (via the Guardian). “As a human and as a person – even as a player of course [I’d like him to stay]. But we have to see what happens at the end of the season.”