Guardiola responds to Messi-City talk

English Premier League

Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola has responded to speculation that he's attempting to lure Lionel Messi to the Premier League.

Messi, 33, reportedly signalled his intent to leave Barcelona upon the expiry of his contract at the end of next season after becoming increasingly frustrated about the club's hierarchy and drop in standards of the playing squad.

READ: Messi to leave Barcelona in 2021?

While Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu swiftly denied the reports from Cadena Ser it hasn't stopped the rumours that Guardiola will try to reunite with the Blaugrana club-record scorer.

Scroll through the gallery to see the high profile transfers already confirmed for the 2020/21 season

READ: Zidane wants Messi to remain in LaLiga

But speaking to the press ahead of their next league fixture the Spaniard insisted that he wants Messi to remain at Camp Nou.

"I'm not going to speak about transfers until the end of the season. My wish is that Messi is going to stay in Barcelona," Guardiola said before deflecting questions about their inability to replace ex-captain Vincent Kompany.

"At the end of the season. [I will talk]. We still have incredible targets to fight for.

The Citizens will be aiming to get back to winning ways when they host Newcastle United on Wednesday evening at the Etihad Stadium.

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