Man City would win title with Messi, says Crouch

Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg match between SSC Napoli and FC Barcelona at Stadio San Paolo on February 25, 2020 in Naples, Italy.

The former Liverpool striker admits the arrival of the Argentine at the Etihad would nudge Pep Guardiola's side ahead of the Reds.

The arrival of Lionel Messi at Manchester City “would be the difference between them winning the title and not”, claims Peter Crouch, with the former Liverpool striker considering the defending champions to be favourites in 2020-21.

Pep Guardiola has already started reshaping his squad ahead of the new season, with deals done for Nathan Ake and Ferran Torres.

There is the promise of more arrivals to come at the Etihad Stadium, with there a chance that six-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi could be lured to England from Barcelona.

Crouch feels a deal for the forward could be the difference between City closing the gap on Liverpool and spending another campaign stuck in the Reds’ shadow.

The ex- England international told Paddy Power : “Imagine if City pulled off the Lionel Messi transfer?

“I love watching them play now, they’re an absolute class act. And honestly, if they added Messi, I’d think that would be the difference between them winning the title and not.

“This season is the last year of Pep Guardiola’s contract at City – and he’s been a top-class manager for them. The only thing failing him is Europe, isn’t it?

“Winning the Champions League has eluded him, but the improvement the club have made since he took charge has been unbelievable. He’s kicked them on to a new level, but some people might not view it as successful as other managers because of the Champions League.

“It is the one trophy they are so desperate to win.

“I think Guardiola has been a breath of fresh air for the Premier League – his football has been amazing. He’s a top manager, but not winning the Champions League is definitely a blot.”

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