‘Messi is more than a dream for Inter’ – Mirabelli believes Barcelona superstar can be prised from Camp Nou

Lionel Messi, Barcelona, Inter badgeGetty composite

Lionel Messi is “more than a dream” for Inter, claims Massimiliano Mirabelli, with the Serie A giants having left their door open to the Barcelona superstar for several years.

A move for the Argentine icon has been mooted at San Siro for some time now.

Former Nerazzurri president Massimo Moratti never shied away from the fact that he would have welcomed the opportunity to add an all-time great to the books in Milan. Current supremo Zhang Jindong has retained that ambition, but putting a deal in place was always going to prove tricky.

Prising Messi away from Barca has been a near impossible task throughout his remarkable career to date, with the six-time Ballon d’Or winner remaining fiercely loyal to the Liga giants.

Questions are, however, being asked of his future on the back of a disastrous end to the 2019-20 campaign for those at Camp Nou.

Contract extension talks have been put on hold, with Messi having less than 12 months left to run on his current terms.

That situation is offering hope to his many suitors around the world, with Inter expected to figure prominently in any transfer scramble.

Mirabelli believes that will be the case, with the former Nerazzurri director telling Radio Sportiva: “When I was at Inter, President Zhang would talk about the transfer market and say, ‘I want Messi,’ but we had to explain it wasn’t possible due to Financial Fair Play.

“I can assure you that Messi is more than a dream for Inter. He now has only a year left on his contract and Barca don’t want to risk losing him for free next summer.

“There are important decisions to be made in Spain, but they won’t want to be left empty-handed. Anyone who wants to make the most of the situation should step forward.”

Inter should expect to face plenty of competition if Messi were to invite offers from afar, with Pep Guardiola’s presence at Manchester City and the spending power of Premier League heavyweights set to ensure that they are very much in the mix.

The chance to rekindle a long-running rivalry with Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo in Italy could appeal to the South American, however.