Manchester City have ended their pursuit of Barcelona great Lionel Messi and will focus their attentions on signing one of Erling Haaland, Harry Kane or Romelu Lukaku, say reports.
The Premier League club have been heavily linked with Messi since he submitted a transfer request at the end of last season.
However, Sport reports that the Citizens have decided against offering Messi a contract, with the Argentina icon’s current deal at the Camp Nou set to expire at the end of the season.
Borussia Dortmund hotshot Haaland, Inter Milan star Lukaku and Tottenham striker Kane are the three top names on the Etihad club’s shortlist for the summer market.
City are on the hunt for a new No 9 after announcing on Monday that all-time top-scorer Sergio Aguero will leave the club when his contract runs out at the season’s end.
Messi tried to leave Barca last summer but couldn’t find a route out without entering into a legal dispute with his boyhood club, and eventually he reluctantly stayed.
But with a new era now in place at the Catalan club after Joan Laporta’s victory in the presidential elections, City believe that Messi will sign a contract extension.
With Pep Guardiola’s side out of the equation, Messi’s only remaining option appears to be a move to PSG.
Laporta is confident that he will convince the 33-year-old to stay put, but Messi is taking his time to mull things over and won’t make a decision until the end of the season.
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