It had been reported that an offer had already been put to Messi, but City have strongly refuted this.
According to ESPN, the 2018/19 Premier League champions are set to hold off until the Argentine superstar has made his mind up about the next stage of his career.
With his contract due to expire at the end of the season, the 33-year-old is free to speak to clubs outside Spain, but it is understood that no talks have been made so far.
Messi looked to be on the brink of leaving Barcelona last summer, when he handed in a transfer request before ultimately agreeing to stay with the Catalan giants at least for 2021/22.
Barca have won their last seven league games and are unbeaten in 12 and, as such, aren’t quite out of the La Liga title race, but Tuesday night’s 4-1 thrashing at home to PSG has left them on the verge of their earliest Champions League exit for 14 years.
The current sense that it is something of an end of an era at the Nou Camp, coupled with the club’s pandemic-induced financial hit, will have fuelled speculation that Messi will move on to pastures new this summer.
Four times a Champions League winner, Messi made his Barcelona debut in 2004 and has amassed 654 goals and 282 assists in 761 appearances.
December saw the man many will call the greatest player of all time break Pele’s all-time domestic scoring record by netting for the 644th time in a 3-0 win over Real Valladolid.
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