Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has revealed that he wanted to sign Lionel Messi when the Barcelona forward was just 16 years old.
Messi has since gone on to spend his entire professional career at Camp Nou, enjoying a legendary stint with the Catalan giants which has produced 603 goals from 687 appearances in all competitions.
Wenger has said that he attempted to give the Argentine a different path, however, only to be bluntly rebuffed by the La Liga giants.
The Frenchman told beIN Sports: "We were in discussions with Messi when we bought [Cesc] Fabregas, because Messi played with him.
"You can realise sometimes what fantastic youth teams you had before when you're a club like Barcelona. In the same team, Messi, [Gerard] Pique and Fabregas.
"Pique and Fabregas came to England, Messi stayed in Spain. We were interested in him, but he was untouchable at the time."
Barcelona are allegedly attempting to tie down Messi to a contract which would last for the rest of his career.