Transfer news

Messi enthused by Sanchez deal

July 15, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi is enthusiastic about the possible arrival of winger Alexis Sanchez from Udinese and believes he would add further quality to the La Liga champions.

Alexis Sanchez
GettyImagesAlexis Sanchez has his heart set on Barcelona

• Barca make offer for Sanchez
• Udinese confirm Zapata exit

Sanchez, a Chile international, has been strongly linked with a move to Barca this summer after seemingly snubbing interest from Manchester United, Manchester City and Inter Milan.

''I know that Alexis Sanchez is a great player,'' Messi is quoted as saying in Gazzetta dello Sport. ''It would be without a doubt a sensational signing and it would be a great reinforcement for us.''

Sanchez, who is under contract with Udinese until June 2014, has also been linked with a move to Chelsea but has made his desire to move to Spain clear.

Udinese representative Quique Pina, who has played a key role in negotiations, said this week that he believes a deal with Barcelona is very close.

Pina said: "Both clubs have the utmost interest to finalise the transfer. The signing will be £27 million plus variables - he prefers to play in Spain."