Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta says it would be good for football if Lionel Messi moved to the Premier League.
The 33-year-old has handed in a transfer request to leave Barcelona for the first time in his career.
A myriad of clubs have been named as potential landing spots for the Argentine, including Arsenal, and Arteta admits his arrival would boost English football.
“He’s been linked everywhere. He has more clubs than any other player in history after him,” Arteta said before Saturday’s Community Shield against Liverpool.
“I’ve been a Barcelona fan since I was young so it’s always sad to see what in my opinion has been the best player in football history leave that football club, but, I don’t know, let’s see what happens and if he comes to England, we are all going to enjoy it.
And when asked he would enjoy managing against Messi in the Premier League, Arteta said: “It doesn’t matter, it’s good for football. If it’s not there we might find him in the Champions League. You want the best players in your league. For me, that is the best thing as an athlete, to have the most competitive league in the world.
“The Premier League always had that. With Ronaldo, I played against him when he was great, it raises the level of every individual and every team as well.”