Di Maria: I almost joined Barcelona in 2017

Lionel Messi picks his two favourites to win the Champions League

Angel di Maria has admitted that he was inches away from sealing a move to Barcelona, but saw the deal fall through in the end.

The past 10 Ballons d'Or have been won by Barcelona star Messi and Real Madrid forward Ronaldo, with Kaka in 2007 the last player outside that duo to claim the coveted individual honour.

Known for getting on very well with Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano (among others), Di Maria was preoccupied by the arrivals of star names like Neymar and Kylian Mbappe'.

However, despite what looked an arduous challenge, Di Maria has been able to record 21 starts across all competitions for PSG this season, and now finds himself in a prosperous run of form, netting four goals in his past four games - with a hat-trick coming during his side's last outing - as well as providing six assists so far this term.

Di Maria has now confirmed that he did in fact hold talks with Barca, but talks collapsed late on.

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In the absence of Mbappe, first through injury and more recently through suspension following his red card at Rennes last month, the 29-year-old has five goals in six games, with his last coming in Tuesday's 4-1 win at Sochaux.

"I was close to Barcelona, but in the end, it wasn't possible", the winger told TyC Sports, as quoted by Spanish news outlet Marca.

"Lionel Messi? He's the best every year, it's always the same".

"When Messi or Ronaldo will be in a bad shape, and we'll see more at Cristiano because of his age [33], Neymar will be the next Ballon d'Or victor".


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