Zenit ready to make shock move for Barcelona's Messi
tribalfootball.com - June 30, 2008
Zenit St Petersburg's backers are ready to make a sensational offer for Barcelona star Lionel Messi.
Russian energy group, Gazprom, financially support Zenit and RIA Nowosti says they've discussed in recent days the prospect of splashing out on Argie ace Messi.
Gazprom are willing to put Â£18 million towards signing Messi, with Zenit including Andrei Arshavin in their offer to bring the total bid in the region of Â£30 million.
Arshavin And €20m For Messi - Zenit
Zenit St. Petersburg have said that they would be willing to allow Andrei Arshavin to join Barcelona this summer, as long as Lionel Messi goes in the opposite direction.
The Russian news agency, Ria Novosti, reported the outlandish idea as the Blaugrana are said to have made an approach for the Russian international.
While Zenit recognise that Arshavin may well be leaving given the renewed interest in his services after some impressive display at Euro 2008, they are certain he will not leave on the cheap.
An idea about Messi arose because of the constant speculation in the media about the link with BarÃ§a and so the club told Ria Novosti that they were ready to counter the offer.
Zenit will now propose to Barcelona that Messi joins them in exchange for Arshavin and €20m, a move designed to show that they will be no pushovers in negotiations.
Several other clubs are also interested in the 27-year-old and speculation is rife that the Blaugrana are being used so publicly to pull other clubs into the bidding.
Chelsea are allegedly one other major side that could make a move, with Roman Abramovich said to be ready to intervene personally to try and persuade the player to move to Stamford Bridge.
BarÃ§a hope to wrap up all their summer transfer dealings by the end of the end of this week before the referendum on the club's board takes place on Sunday.
No chance of happening, I don't think Messi would even go there but interesting none the less.