A recent report from Diario SPORT has offered a positive update on Barcelona’s pursuit of a new central midfielder.
The Catalans have identified three options in the market, in the form of Aurelien Tchouameni, Martin Zubimendi, and Ruben Neves.
While Xavi rates both Zubimendi and Tchouameni highly, it appears Neves is the likeliest candidate to join Barcelona in the coming summer, with the club now pushing for the signing of the Wolves starlet.
Barcelona are aware of Neves’ hefty price tag, with the reports speculating a figure of more than €60 million even though the player only has two years remaining on his contract at Molineux.
But Barça are expected to make a move regardless, primarily thanks to their relationship with Neves’ agent Jorge Mendes. The Portuguese superagent has agreed to ease the operation, to an extent, and will help the club get their hands on the midfielder.
Barcelona speculate Neves’ actual value could be far less than what has been reported. Mendes remains in contact with Wolves, trying to lower the value further by adding a few Barcelona fringe players in the operation.
The Portuguese mastermind played a key role in helping Wolves sign Francisco Trincao on loan last summer. He could now offer the likes of Alejandro Balde, Oscar Mingueza and Abde Ezzalzouli in an exchange deal this summer, in an attempt to lower Neves’ valuation.
The player himself is determined to join Barcelona as he wants to become a part of Xavi’s setup and eventually emerge as the club’s desired replacement for Sergio Busquets.
As we near the start of the summer transfer window, Neves could turn out to be one of many exciting players to join Barcelona and add some reality into the ranks for the Catalans, as they look to compete for La Liga and Champions League next season.