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Lionel Messi once compared Liverpool target Arthur Melo to Barcelona legend Xavi

Rory O'Callaghan

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Lionel Messi once compared Liverpool target Arthur Melo to Barcelona legend Xavi

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Lionel Messi once compared Liverpool target Arthur Melo to Barcelona icon Xavi.

Liverpool are in talks to sign Arthur, 26, on loan from Juventus, with the Premier League club desperate to bring in midfield reinforcements before the transfer window closes.

The Brazil international is expected to undergo a medical on Merseyside on Thursday afternoon, with Liverpool hoping to complete the deal before the 11pm deadline.

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Arthur began his career with Brazilian side Gremio before moving to Barcelona in a €31m (£26.7m) move in 2018.

He scored four goals in 72 appearances with the La Liga club over two seasons before being sold to Juventus in 2020.

Arthur has gone on to make 63 appearances for the Italian club in his two seasons in Turin, scoring once.

During his time at Barcelona, Messi compared the Brazilian midfielder to Barcelona legend and current head coach.

"He is very similar to Xavi, as he likes to have the ball, play short and not lose it," Messi said.

"He is very solid and he surprised me.

Messi compared Arthur to Barcelona legend Xavi (Image: Alamy)
Messi compared Arthur to Barcelona legend Xavi (Image: Alamy)

"Arthur has the style we have here at Barcelona, he quickly understood training and Barcelona fans like players who are good with the ball at their feet and we are used to having possession."

Despite previously insisting Liverpool did not need to sign another midfielder, manager Jurgen Klopp recently admitted his side may need to bring in another player.

It comes after captain Jordan Henderson suffered a hamstring injury in Wednesday’s dramatic 2-1 win over Newcastle.

Klopp said: "It must be the right player. Some players are just unavailable, that's how it is, but if we can do something, and if we will do something, then we are 100 per cent convinced about it. If we are not convinced, then we will not do it. That's the situation.

Liverpool are in talks to sign Melo on loan from Juventus (Image: Alamy)
Liverpool are in talks to sign Melo on loan from Juventus (Image: Alamy)

"If it's the right player, we need him. If it's not the right player, we don't need him.

"I'm the one who said we don't need a midfielder, and now we need a midfielder. You were all right and I was wrong. That is the situation.

"But that specific point doesn't change it. If we do something, then it has to be the right one."

It remains to be seen whether Liverpool will get the deal for Arthur over the line in time before Thursday's deadline.

Topics: Barcelona, Lionel Messi, Liverpool, Football, Premier League, Paris Saint-Germain, La Liga, Transfers

Rory O'Callaghan
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