Angel di Maria has revealed he contacted Lionel Messi on Instagram in a bid to lure him to Paris Saint-Germain in the midst of the Barcelona star’s transfer stand-off with the Spanish club.
Last month, the 33-year-old announced intentions to leave Catalonia after almost two decades with the club, attempting to walk away from the Nou Camp for free as a result of a clause in his contract.
Barcelona disputed the eligibility of the clause, insisting that Messi had not activated it in time to allow him to leave for free, and as such their prized asset could only leave the club if his £625m release clause was met.
Manchester City were the front runners for Messi’s signature, with a reunion with former boss Pep Guardiola on the cards. PSG and Inter Milan were also in the running to sign the superstar.
And Di Maria, who plays alongside Messi for the Argentina national team, has revealed he contacted his team-mate over a potential move to the French capital.
‘The first thing I sent to Messi when I found out he didn’t want to continue at Barcelona was an Instagram message where I told him how PSG could play with Messi,’ the attacker told Radio Continental via RMC Sport.
However, Messi conceded defeat in his bid to leave Barcelona this summer, announcing that he would play under Ronald Koeman for the 2020-21 campaign.
‘I am going to continue at this club because the president has told me the only way I can leave is if I pay the €700million (£625m) and that is impossible,’ he said.
‘The only other way was to go to court and I would never take Barcelona to court because I love the club.
‘The president always said that at the end of the season I could decide if I wanted to go or if I wanted to stay and in the end he did not keep his word.’
Messi has featured in all three of Barcelona’s games this season, and bagged a brace in the club’s 3-1 win over Girona last week.