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Wed 20 May 2009 11:31 PM

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Man City denies Messi approach

UAE-owned Premiership club denies Spanish media reports it has made bid for Barcelona playmaking giant.

UAE-owned Premiership club Manchester City has denied it has made approaches to Barcelona's Argentinian playmaker, Lionel Messi.In a statement posted on its website, Manchester City it said it notes 'with interest the reports circulating in the Spanish media that the club has made an offer to the Barcelona player Lionel Messi and that he has turned down the chance to join the club'.

'While acknowledging that Lionel Messi is a world-class player of the highest calibre, Manchester City would like to make it clear that the club has at no time made an approach to Mr Messi or his representatives', the statement said.

Messi is considered to be one of the best football players of his generation, having received several Ballon d'Or and FIFA World Player of the Year nominations by the age of 21.

He was selected as both the FIFPro and World Soccer Magazine Young Player of the Year for three years running from 2005-2008.

Manchester City is owned by UAE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs HH Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

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