Jurgen Klopp warns Man City could be almost unstoppable with Lionel Messi transfer as Citizens eye £1.4m-a-week deal
JURGEN KLOPP warned Liverpool’s chances of retaining the title will take a serious hit if Manchester City land Lionel Messi.
City are close to agreeing terms of £1.4million a week with the Barcelona superstar — made up of salary, signing-on fee, bonuses and image rights.
There is still some way to go to prise him from the Nou Camp.
But Reds boss Klopp said: “Messi would clearly help Manchester City and make it even more difficult to beat them, which was already very difficult.”
Klopp, whose champions face FA Cup winners Arsenal in the Community Shield today, is not convinced City will pull off the mega deal.
He added: “For the Premier League, it would be great to have the best player in the world in the League.
“I am not sure the Premier League needs a boost but it would be, for sure.
“It would be interesting to see, as Messi has never played in another league other than Spain.
"Football is different here. I would like to see it but I am not sure I will.”
Klopp admitted there is no chance Liverpool could sign the Argentine maestro, 33.
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He said: “Interest? Who doesn’t want to have Messi in their team? But no chance.
“The numbers are absolutely not for us, so we don’t even have to start thinking about it!
“It is clear, there is no chance. But he’s a good player, to be honest!”
Sunsport understands lawyers representing both City and Messi’s representatives have made substantial progress on a deal which will satisfy the player’s financial demands.
The record six-time Ballon d’Or winner, would be contracted to the club’s parent company — City Football Group — and have a clause which will allow him to join fellow stable club, New York City, after leaving the Etihad.
Boss Pep Guardiola has a similar clause with regard to joining the MLS side when he leaves City.
Messi’s representatives were in touch with Barcelona yesterday to request a formal meeting next week to discuss how he can leave the Catalan giants.
He is determined to win the Champions League for a third time before he leaves European football and sees City as a good option.
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Obstacles remain regarding the clause in Messi’s contract, which the player claims allows him to leave for free.
The fax which informed Barca of his transfer request was a bureau document which is a legal requirement meaning it can be used in any future court proceedings.
City are prepared to foot Messi’s legal bills in his bid to force his way out, but are also preparing for the possibility of negotiating with Barca.
That gesture has been received warmly by Messi and his father and agent, Jorge, who felt let down when Barca offered no support during the player’s trial for tax avoidance.
Messi intends to turn up for training on Monday in accordance with employment law but expects an update from the club on their position beforehand.
City have ruled out allowing Bernando Silva, Riyad Mahrez and Gabriel Jesus being involved in any swap deal, but Angelino and Eric Garcia are available.
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