Paulinho has been a surprise revelation at Barcelona since his widely-mocked arrival at the Catalan club in the summer.
So it should come of little surprise to hear that Lionel Messi had something to do with his signing at the La Liga giants.
The Brazilian has revealed Messi convinced him to move to the Nou Camp as he was lining up a free-kick during an international friendly.
Messi’s Argentina took on Paulinho’s Brazil in June this year, and Messi got to work on telling the former Spurs man all about the famous Spanish club.
Paulinho said: “I was getting ready to take a free kick in a game between Brazil and Argentina.
“Suddenly, I saw Messi behind me getting closer, and he says ‘Are you going to Barcelona or not?’ I said, ‘if you want to bring me there, you can. I’ll go.’
“After that match, I exchanged shirts with Messi.”
And the rest is history.
Paulinho has defied expectations since his €40million arrival at Barca, scoring twice in five games.
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