Manchester City are already in talks with Lionel Messi’s father about a sensational swoop for the wantaway superstar.

The Argentine is set to leave his boyhood club after handing in a transfer request, disillusioned with Barcelona’s downwards trajectory, the culmination of which was the Champions League debacle against Bayern Munich.

According to outlets RAC1 and TyC Sports, Jorge Messi is already in England and sitting down with the Citizens, underlining their position as frontrunners to secure his services.

Man City have the financial clout to have Messi in their ranks, Pep Guardiola as their boss and one of his best friends – Sergio Aguero – to link up with; so the stars do seem to be aligning. Not to mention they have a star-studded squad that will compete for the most glitzy prizes there are to offer as he approaches the twilight of his career.

Next week there is even talk of Jorge Messi and Ferran Soriano going to Barcelona to try to expedite negotiations and to talk through what is turning out to be an enigmatic clause concerning whether he can leave for free or not in the 2020/21 season, the last year of his contract.

Mundo Deportivo speculate that makeweights in the form of Eric Garcia or Angelino could be part of a deal or even Gabriel Jesus. Clearly, though, nothing is off the table as Man City look to secure a transfer of historic significance.

It now seems that after 17 years, 34 trophies and 634 goals, Messi’s time at Camp Nou is up.