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Lionel Messi urges Barcelona to raid Man City for €25m Guardiola starlet

Pablo Maffeo’s loan spell with Girona this season may pay major dividends, as it’s reported Lionel Messi wants him at Barcelona next year.

The 20-year-old has made three appearances for the senior Man City side, but was shipped out on loan again this season to earn regular playing time and develop his game further.

This is now the third year he’s been with Girona, racking up 46 appearances in the process, and according to Don Balon, as re-reported by The Express, Messi has seen enough from the youngster to want him at the Nou Camp to solve a current problem in the squad.

The report values Maffeo at €25m which seems a little hefty given he has yet to really prove himself at the top level on a consistent basis, but Messi is seemingly keen on him becoming his teammate.

Summer signing Nelson Semedo has failed to entirely convince in the right-back position this season, while it isn’t Sergi Roberto’s natural role despite the fact that he continues to do a commendable job there.

Barcelona have struggled to address the issue since Dani Alves left in truth, and so the Catalan giants will be desperate to find a long-term solution and Maffeo could be in with a chance of being given a shot if Messi has anything to do with it, as per Don Balon.

From Guardiola’s perspective, having been busy building a young nucleus of quality players at Man City, he’ll surely be keen to keep hold of the brightest talents in the youth system and those out on loan currently.

However, with Kyle Walker dominating that role for the Premier League leaders, Maffeo may look at that and be tempted to look elsewhere for a better path to a prominent role at senior level, and there aren’t many better places for that than at the Nou Camp and with Messi’s reported approval to boot.

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