Chelsea were said to have prepared an offer for Lionel Messi in the summer, with Adidas alleged to have been ready to pay £105 million towards the transfer.
It sounds ridiculous, and a rumour which belongs in The Transfer Bin, right?
Well rumours regarding Lionel Messi's future have taken a dramatic turn.
FIFA agent Francois Gallardo arrived last night in the studio of Spanish show Punto Pelota, promising 'a bombshell that will paralyse the footballing planet.'
He did not disappoint. He claims a decision has been taken by Lionel Messi to leave Barcelona at the end of the current season.
"What we will discuss possibly make me receive some brutal reviews but I have no problem. I do not care.
"In late September, just two months ago, one Barca player and his advisers met with Barca. The footballer wanted a review of his contract and the Catalans promised that they would carry it out. They agreed an increase. Yet after a month, the club made contact with them and explained that they could not fulfill it.
"A month ago, the relationship between advisors and the club is null. player feels betrayed and decided to leave at the end of the season... the player has a verbal agreement with another team.
"The decision is taken.Leo Messi will leave the club at the end of season."
It sounds quite remarkable, and even more shocking that a supposed agreement has been reached with another club. Could that be Chelsea re-igniting their proposed plan?
His previous strained relationship with Jose Mourinho could hint not, while there is no denying Manchester City's ex-Barcelona hierarchy would love to bring him in, and could afford it. Pep Guardiola's Bayern are also contenders. Messi has a release clause of £210 million.
A word of warning though regarding Gallardo, he once also claimed John Terry was Valencia bound, so it is fair to say he does not always get it right.
Even so he sounds convinced on this one. Do we believe it will happen? Put it this way, the thought of Messi in any club shirt other than Barcelona seems unthinkable to us.
What the claims do, regardless of an agreement with another team or not, is give hope to any club who did hold grand ambition to try to sign the Argentine. Impossible? It appears we will find out next summer.
image: © jeroen_bennink