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Zenit sign Bart Simpson

The Toe Poke 10 hours ago
Read
Aug 19, 2012

City accidentally bid for Messi

Former Manchester City chief executive Garry Cook has revealed how the club once made a £30 million bid for Barcelona's Lionel Messi by accident.

• Live Transfer Blog: On the Move

Cook, who left the Etihad Stadium last September, made the revelation in a new book detailing the history of the club.

He told author Gary James about the mix-up in an interview for 'The Manchester City Years', which has just been published.

The offer for Messi was made following a breakdown in communication between club officials as Sheikh Mansour completed his £210 million takeover in August 2008.

Barcelona rejected the offer, and City instead signed Brazilian playmaker Robinho from Real Madrid for £32 million.

Cook explained that the mix-up happened when officials were finalising Sheikh Mansour's plans by telephone.

He said: "He (an executive) made a comment like: 'It's all getting messy.'

"Via the telephones and other communication lines, this somehow translated into: 'Get Messi.'

"An offer was made for Lionel Messi of about £30 million. Needless to say, it was rejected."

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