Man City was putting up a €100 million signing bonus for this star.
Higuain was left out of Jorge Sampaoli's squad for Argentina's final two World Cup qualifiers against Peru and Ecuador in October, but the Barcelona star feels the Juventus striker is still important to the national team.
Argentina, who reached the final in 2014, struggled during qualification for Russia, going through three coaches before securing their place at the tournament. "I have always said that I don't consider myself to be a striker, but I have been lucky enough to always score goals and win individual prizes", he said. It was only a first contact for them to know my family and for me to meet them.
"But I think that this time away from the national team has done him good, now he is seeing things in a different light".
"And a part of that doubt is due to the way the country is at the moment", added Messi.
"We were worthy of winning them because, without having played well, we had the clearest [chances] - both in the World Cup and the Copas America".
"He is suffering for the national team, but he must be in it", Messi stated.
"I would have to review them to see what we did wrong so we don't repeat them".
"We have to improve if we aspire to be world champions", said Messi. Messi, however, believes they should have celebrated at least two victories. "Then, if I sign the contract, I will be a Barcelona player, but this has not happened".
Argentina and Nigeria will play at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium in Novgorod on 21 June.
Higuain has been dropped for the last few games in favour of Inter hitman Mauro Icardi. "I have learnt that the season is long and that there are times which are harder because the years fly by and now my body pays the price fof playing so many matches", Messi admitted.