Tactical Insights

Pique reveals he and Lionel Messi were lined up for double transfer to Premier League giants before Man Utd swooped

BARCELONA legend Gerard Pique has revealed Arsenal once attempted to sign both him and Lionel Messi.

The two players joined Barcelona‘s world renowned La Masia academy at a young age before turning professional.

Gerard Pique revealed Arsenal tried to sign him before he joined Man UtdCredit: Reuters
Arsenal also pushed to sign Lionel MessiCredit: AFP

Prior to signing his first pro deal, Pique received interest from two Premier League clubs – Arsenal and Manchester United.

The Gunners had already signed Cesc Fabregas from the Spanish side, but tried to seal a deal for Pique as well.

However, Man Utd swooped in to hijack the move.

Speaking to BBC Five Live, Pique revealed: “The first one was Cesc [Fabregas] the summer before I left to go to Manchester United.

“Then Arsene [Wenger] came to sign me. At that time Arsenal didn’t want to get into a big fight with Barcelona because they already took Cesc.

“So they were trying to arrive to a deal with Barcelona and it took more time than we wanted to so Manchester United arrived and said, ‘Listen, we want you, lets make a decision right now,’ and I decided to go there.”

Pique then went on to reveal that ex-Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger also attempted an audacious swoop for Messi.

He continued: “And it’s true that later on I think Arsene also tried to sign Messi – but he didn’t have a chance.


“So then the good part of that is all of us went back to Barcelona, we played together again for the first team of Barcelona.”

Pique and Messi spent 13 years together at Barcelona and won eight La Liga titles and three Champions League titles.

Arsenal’s top targets in the summer transfer window

The Spanish defender retired from professional football in 2022.

Meanwhile, Messi is now playing for Inter Miami in the MLS.

He joined the club on a free transfer last summer after his Paris Saint-Germain contract expired.

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