‘I’m a Euro 2024 hero loved by Pep Guardiola who tried to refuse Lionel Messi request' – Football News

‘I’m a Euro 2024 hero loved by Pep Guardiola who tried to refuse Lionel Messi request'

Dani Olmo has been impressing so far at the Euros (Image: Getty)

Manchester City’s transfer radar is firmly fixed on Dani Olmo, the Spanish sensation who admitted to once trying to snub a photo with Lionel Messi during his youth. The dynamic winger, who scored the first goal in Spain’s 2-1 triumph over Germany and set up their decisive extra-time winner, is being eyed for a switch to the Etihad Stadium.

Pep Guardiola’s City are currently considering triggering his €60million (£50.7m) buyout clause at RB Leipzig to bring him to England, with Olmo reportedly keen on the move, reports the Manchester Evening News.

Olmo, a product of Barcelona’s esteemed La Masia academy, encountered the six-time Ballon D’or maestro Messi as a boy but was less than thrilled to pause his playtime for a snapshot with the football icon. Joining La Masia in 2007, Olmo played his football there for seven years before making the leap to Dinamo Zagreb.

The tale of his reluctant meeting with Messi unfolded while his father was overseeing a match at Castelldefels. Speaking to The Players’ Tribune, Olmo recalled: “One time, before I even joined La Masia, I accompanied my father while he was managing a game at Castelldefels.

“I was eight years old. I was playing happily by myself with a ball, when someone – I think it was a friend of my dad’s – came over and told me, ‘Hey, Dani, come here! You’re not going to believe this. You’re going to have your picture taken with Lionel Messi’!”

Olmo jokingly claimed the photo was taken “against his will” and he felt like he was doing Messi a “favour” by pausing his game to take a picture.


Olmo met Messi as a youngster (Image: Getty)

He remarked: “Apparently, Messi had a friend playing in the Castelldefels game and had come down to see him. Wow, Messi, right? In Castelldefels? What kid wouldn’t want their picture with him?

“Well, me! I was like, ‘No, thanks. I’m good. I want to keep playing! It’s just a picture, right?’ But, against my will, they stuck me next to Messi and took the picture. I didn’t even say anything to him. I just waited for the click and then I went back to my ball, like I was doing him a favour.”

The Spain international added: “In the end, I have to say I’m glad they forced me, because I’ve still got that picture framed at home. At the time though, I wasn’t happy to have my valuable playing time interrupted – even by an icon.”

After leaving Barcelona in 2014 without a single first-team appearance, Olmo moved to Dinamo Zagreb, becoming a key player there.

He later transferred to Leipzig in January 2020 despite rumours of a Barcelona comeback – and following his standout performances for Spain in Euro 2024, Manchester City have shown interest.

Sky Sports reports that City have not yet made concrete contact with Olmo regarding a transfer, although the player is reportedly eager for a move to England.

Source: https://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/1919804/Dani-Olmo-Lionel-Messi-Man-City-Euro-2024-Spain