Barcelona are weighing up a move for Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti in 2016, Goal understands.
Italian was the first player recommended to the Barca board by transfer
chief Ariedo Braida upon the 69-year-old's appointment last year and
the Catalan club have continued monitoring the midfielder ever since.
candidate Agusti Benedito revealed he had spoken to the player's agent
and admitted he hoped the 22-year-old would move to Camp Nou this
summer, but former club chief Josep Maria Bartomeu was elected instead
after signing Atletico Madrid midfielder Arda Turan.
said that Verratti is not for sale at any price, but sources in France
believe a bid of around €50 million could land the midfielder next
summer and coach Luis Enrique said in April: "I have always liked
Marco's playing style. He is a player who could fit in at Barcelona."
And the admiration is mutual as Verratti share; Sportmasta:
"Barcelona are one of the strongest clubs in the world and have been
for a long time. It is always flattering for a player when such a big
club is interested in you. It is up to the people at Barcelona to decide
[how I would fit in]. But it is true that I like their style."
Xavi now departed, Andres Iniesta turning 32 years old next May and
Arda will be 29 years old in January, Barca are still looking for a
younger player to boost their midfield and Verratti fits the bill.
former Pescara star has also interested Real Madrid, but he has been
put off by their treatment of his former PSG coach Carlo Ancelotti,
while the relationship with Braida plus his healthy respect for Barca
means he would favour a move to the Catalan club next summer.