Barcelona are once more back in Champions League action, and face leaders of the Ukranian First Division, Dynamo Kyiv. Barcelona come into this fixture off the back of more dropped points in La Liga, but know that a victory here in the Champions League would all but seal our place in the last 16, due to our rampant start to the competition.
However, one of the main stories going into this fixture is Dynamo Kyiv’s big absences. Indeed, the Ukranian side have arrived in Barcelona with just 13 first team players available, and several key players missing due to the coronavirus, injuries and suspensions.
Koeman’s side will surely look to take advantage of what will be a weakened Dynamo Kyiv eleven, and should really look to not only get 3 points here, but also secure a dominant performance. Culés will be hoping to see Sergiño Dest, Miralem Pjanić, and also Pedri feature in this one.
Report: Barcelona accept defeat in pursuit of Inter Milan striker
According to reports from Corriere della Sera (relayed by SempreInter), Barcelona have now given up on their pursuit of Inter Milan striker, Lautaro Martinez. The 23-year-old has enjoyed a phenomenal season upfront with Romelu Lukaku, and he is a hot prospect in Europe. He has several skills that make him suited to a team like Barça, who have been chasing him for over a year now.
Inter were initially demanding northwards of €100m for the striker before the start of the 20/21 season. With their financial struggles, the Catalan club were unable to cope with their demands. However, the rumours linking Martinez to Barça did not die down in the months that followed. This is due to the Blaugrana’s dire need for a striker.
The Garnet and the Blue have been considering several options, with the Argentinian striker being only one out of a talented bunch including Aguero, Depay, Haaland, and more. Martinez was hotly tipped to join Barça, apparently wanting a union with his fellow Argentine teammate Lionel Messi.
However, with Inter’s meteoric rise to success, and Martinez’ key role in the team, it seems that he is no longer going to leave the club. The Milan based club is head and shoulders above all other teams in the Serie A, and look set to win their first title in eleven years.
The Argentine forward has played a huge part in Inter’s incredible campaign, scoring fifteen and assisting five in 30 matches this league campaign.
Antonio Conte has done a brilliant job with Inter, and he has also developed Martinez into a phenomenal striker; one who can both score goals as well as drop deep and create the play. With his immense pairing with Lukaku and the inevitable success of Inter, it seems impossible that a transfer is on the card for the young striker any time soon.