BERLIN - Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has ruled out bidding for superstar Lionel Messi, who has a buyout clause worth 250 million euros (S$424 million) in his Barcelona contract.
"We are talking about simply absurd figures, a transfer fee that is even higher than what we spent on Javi Martinez. We won't go there," Rummenigge told German Sky Sports.
"Barcelona's president Sandro Rosell is an old friend and I know they would never sell Messi. He is a saint at Barcelona.
"And I think it would be in Messi's best interest to stay at Barcelona. He fits in perfectly there." Rumours of a Bayern bid for Messi, which would see the Argentinian link up with his former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola, have been circulating in Germany.
The Bavarians could probably afford the enormous sum. A fortnight ago Bayern revealed they had posted a record 432.8 million euros in sales during last season's campaign.
They became the first German club to claim the treble when they won the Champions League, a 23rd German championship and the DFB Cup.
But even Bayern coach Guardiola has said his former protege is at the right club.
"Would I sign Messi? No, no! Barcelona is the best place for him," Guardiola is reported to have said.
Bayern won 3-0 at German rivals Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, in a repeat of May's Champions League final, and are four points clear in the Bundesliga having already reached the knock-out phase in Europe.