Stunning reports have revealed that Arsenal were the first club to make an offer to Lionel Messi as a Barcelona junior.
In his new book, ‘Messi by Guillem Balague’, Spanish football journalist Guillem Balague reveals how Arsenal’s famous Spanish scout, Francis Cagigao, did everything he could to convince the Argentine’s family about moving to London.
As quoted on the Telegraph, Balague writes: “Cagigao was one of the few, indeed, probably the only, European club scouts at these tournaments, so the offer from Arsenal was Leo’s first from a foreign club since he had arrived at Barcelona.
“The Messis listened to what Arsenal had to say but they were not about to have their heads turned.
“Obstacles were apparent in any potential agreement. The English club could not offer a flat for the family, and there would be difficulty obtaining a work permit.
“Bit by bit points of mutual interest evaporated until the offer lay dead in the water. But they left Jorge with a message:
“Any time you encounter problems, remember, our club wants him.’”