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Barcelona face competition from Villarreal, Girona for Uruguayan midfielder

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Photo by JUAN PABLO PINO/AFP via Getty Images

Barcelona, in their pursuit of a defensive midfielder, have turned their attention towards South America. Previously, it was reported that Boca Juniors’ Alan Varela was on their radar for the summer, with Newcastle United ready to rival the Catalans.

Now, Barça are considering signing Uruguayan midfield ace Fabricio Diaz to replace Sergio Busquets. A defensive midfielder by trade, the 20-year-old is a versatile option in the centre of the park and can also operate as a no. 8.

The Blaugranes really like Fabricio, and will need to shell out around €7 million for his signature. However, as per Mundo Deportivo, they face competition from Villarreal, River Plate, Flamengo, and Girona.

As of now, the news suggests that River Plate and Flamengo are the best places side to sign the midfielder. Villarreal and Girona have also inquired about his services, along with Barcelona.

Fabricio is not Barcelona’s first choice to reinforce the defensive midfield, though. They have their eyes set on a certain Martin Zubimendi.

Unfortunately, the Spaniard recently renewed his contract, and any interested party will have to table his release clause as an offer, which currently sits at €60 million.

Elsewhere, Ruben Neves also seemed to be on Barcelona’s agenda, with Joan Laporta a fan of the Portuguese sensation. Xavi, on the other hand, does not believe that the Wolverhampton Wanderers’ man can operate as an anchor, and would work best as part of a double pivot.

That said, even Neves could end up costing Barcelona nearly €50 million given his demand in the Premier League coupled with his impressive form this season.

As such, Fabricio serves as a low-risk, (low-budget), high-reward option for Barcelona if they can fend of the interest of the other clubs in the race.

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