Lionel Messi reportedly believes Barcelona defender Javier Mascherano could be set to make a sensational return to Liverpool.
The 33-year-old defender’s time at the Camp Nou appears to be drawing to a close and his compatriot and close friend Messi thinks Mascherano could be going back to the Premier League, report Diario Gol.
Mascherano left Anfield in January 2011, but the Spanish publication claims Messi is aware the player has made up his mind to leave Catalonia.
Their sources suggest Messi is also aware of the offers the player currently has on the table and Liverpool are one of the those clubs.
Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain are also believed to have registered an interest in the midfielder turned defender as he winds his career down, while MLS are sure to try and dangle a financial carrot.
He is out of contract in the summer of 2019, but he seems resigned to leaving Spain after making just five La Liga starts this season, and his previous connections at Anfield may well give Jurgen Klopp’s men the edge.
“The focus is to be happy and the decision I make will depend on how things are going,” Mascherano told TyC Sports.
“In Barcelona, it is obvious I am not playing at the frequency I played before.
“I’m still playing, I’m still competing, I’m in a team where every game I play is because I earn it in training, but it’s clear there are many times you want to play more.
“I’m not saying that I have to play more, because the starters are two players of the highest level and there is not much more to do there.”
Mascherano signed for Liverpool from West Ham in controversial circumstances in January 2007. He had only been with the Hammers for three months before he moved on to Anfield.
Despite already playing for West Ham and Corinthians in that season FIFA allowed him to sign for a third club, Liverpool, and subsequently they charged West Ham with breaking rules on third-party ownership and fined them £5.5million.