Sergio Aguero said on Monday that he was hoping to have the “pleasure” of playing alongside Lionel Messi after signing a two-year deal with Barcelona.
Aguero will become a Barca player once his contract with Manchester City expires at the end of June, bringing an end to a decade at the Premier League champions and his new team have slapped a €100-million buy-out clause on the 32-year-old.
However, he is still not sure that Messi will be his teammate next season as the club captain is yet to sign an extension to his current contract which expires next month. Barca will hope Aguero’s arrival in Catalonia helps to convince his friend and fellow Argentine Messi to stay, as the club faces up to declining performances on the pitch and a worrying financial situation.
Ronald Koeman’s side finished third in La Liga this past season and has debts of €1.2 billion. They were knocked out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage by Paris Saint-Germain, and could yet face sanctions from Uefa for refusing to back out of the short-lived European Super League project.
Last week club president Joan Laporta said that talks for Messi’s new contract was “going well”, and on Monday insisted that Aguero’s signing was part of a broader Barca rebuild.