Manchester City are ready to make an offer to Barcelona for Lionel Messi that would allow him to move on to the MLS in a couple of years.

Spanish newspaper Marca reports that Manchester City are not yet ready to make an official offer for Lionel Messi, but are preparing the figures should he decide to leave Barcelona at the end of this season.

Pep Guardiola’s side is likely to face competition from Paris Saint-Germain for his signature, but would be able to offer him a path to USA’s Major League Soccer after a couple of years, with sister club New York City FC (NYFC).

If Messi is keen to experience MLS before he retires, then NYFC would give him the chance to live in one of the most glamorous cities in the world.

Pep Guardiola and Lionel Messi

Pep Guardiola won the treble as coach with Lionel Messi and Barcelona (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP/GettyImages)

Manchester City can guarantee Messi an MLS contract whereas PSG cannot do any such thing. The French champions have strongly been linked as a possible option, but the uncertainty with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe’s contractual situations could prove to be vital as well.

For now, it appears that he will still stay in Catalonia now that Joan Laporta is Barca president once again and the side are just 1 point behind league leaders Atletico Madrid with 9 games still to go.

City were very interested in signing Messi last summer after he announced that he wanted to leave Barcelona, but then-president Josep Maria Bartomeu pointed to his 700 million euro release clause, which halted all talks.

Messi was not prepared to go to war with Barcelona over the matter so chose to see out his contract instead while City were only prepared to pay a transfer fee between 50 and 70 million euros, given that the 33-year-old’s contract had just one year to run.

Pep Guardiola is licking his lips on the opportunity of reuniting with the Argentina captain, but will respectfully await the legend’s decision.

Where will one of the greatest footballers of all-time end up in 2021-22?