Mikel Arteta delivers Lionel Messi transfer verdict amid links to Manchester City and Chelsea

Mikel Arteta has insisted he will be delighted if Lionel Messi moves to the Premier League.

The Barcelona forward has reportedly told Barcelona he wants to leave the club this summer for free.

The Spanish giants are insistent that a clause that would allow Messi to walk away for nothing has expired, leaving any potential buyers facing paying a release clause of £630million.

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Manchester City are the most likely Premier League destination for Messi, allowing him to be reunited with Pep Guardiola.

Chelsea, Inter Milan and Paris-Saint Germain have also been heavily linked, although City are thought to be favourites if he did leave Barcelona.

On the prospect of Messi arriving in England, Arteta explained how he would be delighted, even if it put his Arsenal team against the best player in world football.

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“He has been linked everywhere, you know? He has more clubs than any other player in history after him,” Arteta said.

“I’ve been a Barcelona fan since I was young and it’s always sad to see, who in my opinion has been the best player in football history, leave that football club. Let’s see what happens, if he comes to England we’re all going to enjoy it.

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