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Barcelona set sights on World Cup semi-finalist as a low-cost midfield reinforcement

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Photo by ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP via Getty Images

Morocco have emerged as the surprise package in the ongoing FIFA World Cup, beating the likes of Spain and Portugal to miraculously seal a spot in the semifinal stage of the tournament.

Needless to say, there have been many players who have caught the attention of Morocco during the World Cup and some of them may even end up joining top clubs in the upcoming January transfer window.

According to Mundo Deportivo, one of the players could be Azzedine Ounahi, who has become a target for Barcelona.

The report suggests the Catalans are keeping a close eye on Ounahi’s development and have targeted him as a cost-effective option in the January transfer window.

Barça, after all, are in desperate need to reinforce their options in the midfield department next month. Although they are prioritising a move for a new right-back, they are also looking for a central midfielder, who can operate in the interior position.

This is because Xavi wants to provide more competition for Gavi and Pedri in the interior positions. The Barcelona coach had identified Bernardo Silva and Ilkay Gundogan as the main targets, but it appears both the Manchester City superstars could cost a fortune, in terms of salary and transfer fee.

That is where Ounahi comes into the fray. Currently plying his trade for Angers SCO, the Moroccan international has impressed onlookers with his performances in the World Cup, often playing a vital role in the number eight slot.

Although Ounahi does have a contract until 2026, the midfielder is not expected to cost a fortune, which in turn, has Barcelona on red alert. The fact that he can play as an interior midfielder and as a pivot is seen as an added advantage.

The Catalans, therefore, are eyeing a January move for the 22-year-old as they look to shore up their options in the middle of the park. Any transfer, though, would depend on the Blaugrana resolving their Financial Fair Play problems.

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