A few days ago, Barcelona were linked with a move for at least three Chelsea players, with the list including the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, N’Golo Kante and Cesar Azpilicueta.
However, a recent report from Toni Juanmarti now claims that Barcelona have dropped their pursuit of Azpilicueta and Kante. It appears the two veterans are not feasible enough for the club, especially considering their age and dissipating form.
In fact, the Spanish journalist claims Barça have also removed Aubameyang from the priority list, despite reports suggesting that the Gabonese international is ready to rejoin the Catalans even for the lowest salary bracket.
Barcelona relinquishing their interest in these three Chelsea veterans could be an indicator of the club’s shifting policies in the market, with the Blaugrana primarily keen on securing the services of Lionel Messi.
In addition to the Argentine, the club are interested in at least three more signings. While they have showcased the desire to strengthen the ranks in the centre-back, midfield and the number nine role, it is unlikely that any of the three Chelsea veterans fit the bill.
All of them are nearing the final phase of their careers and may add to the club’s inflated wage bracket. Barcelona, instead, are targeting young, talented individuals, with Vitor Roque firmly one of their priorities alongside Messi.
While Barça have been linked with moves for Inigo Martinez and Ilkay Gundogan, both of them have shown tremendous quality, with Gundogan, in particular, still regarded as one of the top players at Manchester City.
Martinez, too, has substantial experience in La Liga, which could be useful in his transition to the Catalan system. He is, therefore, a low-risk option compared to Azpilicueta, who is also likely to demand a much higher salary.