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Sport Lionel Messi 'agreed to join Chelsea in stunning £225m move in 2014'

18:53  15 october  2020
18:53  15 october  2020 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

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Jose Mourinho, Deco are posing for a picture: MailOnline logo © Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo

Lionel Messi may have come close to joining Manchester City this summer but it's not the first time the Barcelona talisman has been on the verge of a move to the Premier League.

According to Sky in Italy's Gianluca Di Marzio, the Argentine superstar was on the cusp of becoming a Chelsea player in 2014.

The fee would have been a world-record £225million transfer - Messi's buyout clause at the time - with Messi, Blues owner Roman Abramovich and then-manager Jose Mourinho keen for the deal to go through. He would have also earned £50m per season plus 70 per cent of image rights had the move not collapsed.

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In his latest book Grand Hotel Calciomercato, a diary of the untold stories of the transfer market, Di Marzio also claims that Real Madrid tried the same ploy in 2013 but they were quickly dismissed by Messi out of his loyalty to their eternal rivals Barca.

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  LaLiga fine with or without Barca's Messi as Tebas warns of COVID-19 financial crisis Javier Tebas discussed Lionel Messi's unsuccessful attempt to leave Barcelona at the start of the season, and the coronavirus pandemic.Messi handed in a transfer request following a tumultuous 2019-20 season, which saw Barca humiliated 8-2 by Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarter-finals and dethroned by Real Madrid in LaLiga, before the six-time Ballon d'Or winner opted to remain at Camp Nou this term.

It is reported that contact between Messi and Chelsea first began in January 2014 as the former was in the midst of a tax fraud probe. Frustrated with the Spanish authorities he sought a new life in London with the lure of playing under Mourinho to boot.


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After speaking with several intermediaries as well as former Barca team-mate Deco, now an agent - who also had played at Chelsea, a meeting was set up with Messi and Mourinho via a FaceTime call.

That reported encounter went well with Messi telling his camp afterwards 'With Mourinho, for how he's spoken to me, I can win whatever I want: he's a winner, go ahead and close the deal.'

a football player on a field: Messi would have earned £50m per season plus 70 per cent of image rights at Stamford Bridge © Provided by Daily Mail Messi would have earned £50m per season plus 70 per cent of image rights at Stamford Bridge

Later that summer, Chelsea did business with Barcelona in the shape of signing Cesc Fabregas. And Di Marizo reports that it was a chat with Fabregas during one July pre-season session that saw the move break down between Messi and the Stamford Bridge outfit.

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It is claimed that after his initial work to make the move work, Deco was squeezed out of talks as Mourinho spoke directly to Messi himself. Fabregas warned Deco of the situation and the former Portugal playmaker duly went to 'snitch' to Messi's father and agent Jorge.

Deco sitting on a table: However, the proposed transfer collapsed after Deco (pictured) went to 'snitch' to Messi's dad Jorge © Provided by Daily Mail However, the proposed transfer collapsed after Deco (pictured) went to 'snitch' to Messi's dad Jorge a man looking at the camera: Messi senior was angry at being excluded from negotiations with the personal terms already agreed by his son's intermediaries and Chelsea © Provided by Daily Mail Messi senior was angry at being excluded from negotiations with the personal terms already agreed by his son's intermediaries and Chelsea

Messi senior himself was angry at being excluded from negotiations with the personal terms already agreed by his son's intermediaries.

'I don't know what you're talking about, I swear,' Messi reportedly told his father.

But it was too late and the potential mouthwatering deal was curtailed as he listened to his father and stayed at the Nou Camp. Still, it wasn't that bad for Messi as Barcelona went on to win the Treble (La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League) as he himself scored 58 goals alongside 27 assists.

Luis Suarez standing in front of a crowd: Messi enjoyed a stellar 2014-15 season winning the Treble - including the Champions League © Provided by Daily Mail Messi enjoyed a stellar 2014-15 season winning the Treble - including the Champions League Read more

El Clasico: Messi's long goodbye to the world's greatest club match .
Lionel Messi could have been a Premier League player by now if Barcelona had acceded to his demands, but another Clasico now awaits him.Before Lionel Messi steps out onto the Camp Nou pitch on Saturday, remember this: he had made up his mind, and he had chosen West Ham away.

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