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Barcelona rivalled by PSG, Newcastle in pursuit of 18-year-old Ligue 1 midfield talent

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Photo by LOIC VENANCE/AFP via Getty Images

Barcelona are keeping tabs on young talent with potential across the globe, which has led them to the signing of Senegalese defender Mikayil Faye, while they maintain a strong interest in Brazilian talents like Vitor Roque and Rayan Vitor.

Another young prospect that has seemingly registered on the radars of the Blaugrana, as reported by SPORT, is Rennes midfielder Desire Doue. However, Barcelona are not alone in pursuit of the 18-year-old talent as PSG and Newcastle United are also keeping tabs on him.

Doue came through the ranks at Rennes and enjoyed his breakthrough campaign in 2022/23 under manager Bruno Genesio. The 18-year-old attacking midfielder finished the season with 34 appearances across all competitions, in which he netted four goals and set up one more.

Doue played his part in helping Rennes secure a top-four finish in Ligue 1 and European football for next season as a result even though his involvement did decrease a bit towards the backend of the season.

Nevertheless, the midfielder, whose market value stands at €15 million, has managed to alert several top clubs across Europe, including Barcelona.

The Blaugrana are on the lookout for a midfield player who can provide goals and creativity so that they can address the over-reliance on Pedri. Ilkay Gundogan of Manchester City remains their main priority, but adding a young talent like Doue to the roster would be a shrewd move.

However, Barcelona would have to stave off competition from PSG, as well as Newcastle United, who are, in particular, pressing hard for the teenager’s signing.

Indeed, the youngster’s agent, Mikael Silvestre, admitted to have had initial contacts with the Magpies in early 2023. And even though his contract with Rennes runs until 2025, an exit is not ruled out at this point.

“He is a talented player and attracted big teams from all over Europe, but no decision has been made about him. He has exams on 20 June, it’s strange but that’s the life of a 17 or 18-year-old,” Silvestre said about his client recently.

It remains to be seen if Barcelona’s interest in Doue leads to anything substantial or whether the likes of PSG or Newcastle swoop him away from Rennes this summer.

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