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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Lionel Messi could have joined Real Madrid instead of Barcelona - ex-agent

Lionel Messi spoke to ESPN about his future at Barcelona and a possible move to China.

A 13-year-old Lionel Messi could have joined Real Madrid instead of Barcelona, says the man who arranged his Barca trial.

The five-time Ballon d'Or winner famously relocated from Rosario, Argentina to Barcelona as a youth in February 2001 with the help of Horacio Gaggioli, who lived in the city and had set up Messi's tryout with the Camp Nou club the previous September.

However, the Argentine agent told Globoesporte had he taken up residence in Madrid -- where he considered living -- back then,...

 By Sid Lowe

Andre Gomes had a rough start at Barcelona but boasts very bright future

With reports indicating Barca rejected a hefty bid for Andre Gomes, the FC panel debate the future for the young midfielder.

It was widely reported this week that FC Barcelona had turned down a €35 million bid for Andre Gomes, to which, let's face it, pretty much everyone's reaction was: You did what?!

When Barcelona signed Gomes last summer, sporting director Robert Fernández described it as "an opportunity the market had presented us with." Now, less than 12 months on, the market had presented them with another opportunity: to get rid again. And, given that they had paid €35m for Gomes (plus another...