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Vitor Roque opens up about Barcelona interest: “I feel ready to play for them”



Photo by JUAN PABLO PINO/AFP via Getty Images

Having turned 18 years old today, Athletico Paranaense striker and Barcelona transfer target Vitor Roque is now eligible to leave Brazil for Europe in the summer transfer window.

And the teenage sensation, who has a host of top clubs tailing him, has claimed that he wants to play for Barça and is ready to do so.

“I feel ready to play for Barcelona,” Roque said, as quoted by SPORT.

When asked about the interest that the Blaugrana have shown in him, the youngster insisted that he tries to focus on his game and that it will earn him his due rewards.

“Look, I try to stay focused on the day-to-day and give my best at Athlético. I’m sure that if I do well here, going to Europe will be a possibility,” he said.

The 18-year-old striker, who helped Brazil U-20 team to the South American U-20 Championship, added that the fact that scouts of a club like FC Barcelona were following him is a matter of huge motivation.

“It’s a great motivation. It’s very important and I see it as a reason to want to aspire for more, to want to work harder, which is what I do,” he said.

On whether he feels special about Barcelona wanting him at a young age of 18 makes him feel, Roque responded in the affirmative, saying:

“Yes, but I have to be humble so that everything turns out well. That’s why I always talk about working and thanking God. Without work and without God none of this would be happening.”

“Playing for Barça is a dream. For any player. If I sign for Barça, my family and I will be very happy. That’s why I keep working hard. I want everything to be sorted out,” he further added, expressing his desire to don the Blaugrana colours.

The Athletico Paranaense striker then revealed that he follows Barcelona striker and ace goalscorer Robert Lewandowski, as he said:

“When I watch Lewandowski on TV I always notice his great finishing ability, which I think is his main strength. He is spectacular and I followed him at Bayern Munich and now at Barcelona.”

On the possibility of playing alongside the Poland captain at Barcelona next season, Roque added: “Yes. If I had a player at my side at this level I would try to learn as much as I could. If this happens, it will be very important for my career. It would be a wonderful thing.”

In recent years, Barcelona have uncovered some young gems within the team that have become big names already, with Pedri and Gavi leading the way. And Roque insisted that it is a source of inspiration and motivation to see the club value players irresepctive of their age.

“It is an added motivation to know that the club values, above all, the quality of the players,” he said.

On a lot of players in the modern generation tasting success at a very young age, the striker said: “In my case, I can tell you that it is a direct consequence of my determination and dedication in training and in matches. I am a footballer who always wants to improve.”

Vitor Roque is likely to cost around €35-40 million, including variables, in the summer according to reports. While he is also being pursued by clubs like PSG, Arsenal and West Ham United, it is abundantly clear that he has his heart set on a move to Barcelona.

And it only seems a matter of time that the Catalans kickstart formal negotiations with Athletico Paranaense and secure his signing in the summer.

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