Messi hails Inter star Martinez amid Barcelona links

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi was asked about rumoured transfer target Lautaro Martinez.

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi (L) and Inter's Lautaro Martinez (R)   -  Getty Images

Lionel Messi described Lautaro Martinez as a "very complete forward" amid growing links to La Liga champion Barcelona.

Inter star Martinez has been tipped to leave the Nerazzurri for Barca, with the Spanish giant reportedly determined to sign a long-term replacement for veteran Luis Suarez.

Messi has previously hailed Argentina team-mate Martinez, who had scored 16 goals in 31 games across all competitions in 2019-20 before the coronavirus pandemic brought sport to a standstill.

READ| Kane sponsors Leyton Orient shirts with charity messages

Asked about Martinez, Barca superstar Messi told Mundo Deportivo: "If I'm honest I don't know very well if there were or are negotiations right now, I have no idea. 

"I think I already mentioned it, that Lautaro is an impressive striker, especially because I think he is a very complete forward. 

"He is strong, he dribbles well, he scores goals, he knows how to protect the ball ...But well, we will have to see what happens finally with him and with other players."

On transfers amid links with former star and Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar, Messi added: "There are a few people at the club who are in charge of the theme of signings and they are the ones who select who they think are best for the team.

"It's obvious that the situation we are in will make the market a bit strange and you have to be sure to improve on what we have."

READ| Revierderby without fans 'painful reality', says Dortmund sporting director Zorc

Barca was two points clear of bitter rival Real Madrid through 27 matches when La Liga was postponed in March due to COVID-19.

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos