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Barcelona cannot sign 17-year-old Argentine wonderkid due financial issues, Man City interested

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After years of excessive spending under Josep Bartomeu’s regime, Barcelona have finally learnt their lesson, and have been trying to cut out the middle-man, and are instead investing directly in young players.

This low-risk, high-reward scenario has proven to be beneficial for Barcelona. Pedri and Ronald Araujo, for example, have done exceedingly well and are two of the fan favourites in the side already.

They have, as such, set their sights on 17-year-old Claudio Echeverri. The Argentine no. 10 put in an excellent shift during the U17 World Cup in November, scoring five goals and setting up one in seven games.

Currently plying his trade for River Plate, he is set to become a free agent in December 2024, after the next season, and has announced his decision to not extend his deal further.

“I’m NOT going to renew my contract at River Plate. I’m going to play for the next months and then we see what happens,” he said, as relayed by Fabrizio Romano.

Not an option for Barcelona this winter

His release clause stands at €25 million, which is more than worth it given his ceiling. However, Barcelona cannot sign him this winter, as per a report by Fernando Polo.

They love the player, but cannot afford to shell out his release clause. Further, they have other priorities on the pitch and do not prioritise the signing of an attacking midfielder.

Manchester City in race

Manchester City are also very interested in signing him, hoping to replicate their success from the Julian Alvarez deal from 2022.

They are more than happy to pay his €25 million release clause as early as this winter, but the player prefers a move to Barcelona.

He will have to wait until the summer, at least, if he wants to move to the Catalan capital, as Barça expect his price to reduce significantly at that point.

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