Amid all the speculations surrounding Robert Lewandowski’s potential move to Camp Nou, a recent report from Mundo Deportivo has offered an update on Barcelona’s pursuit of their defensive targets.
While Barcelona are set to rope in Andreas Christensen from Chelsea on a free transfer, it appears Xavi is not giving up on the pursuit of signing yet another centre-back, as he is worried over Gerard Pique’s longevity and the overall depth in the department.
In addition to Christensen, Barcelona are chasing both Marcos Alonso and Cesar Azpilicueta, but what Xavi truly wants is a technically astute central defender.
The Barcelona coach already has two ideal options in mind, in the form of Jules Kounde and Kalidou Koulibaly.
The report goes at length about the prospect of signing Kounde, suggesting the defender could cost a fortune, with Fabrizio Romano recently revealing a price tag of around €80 million.
But it appears there is still hope for Barcelona yet as they share a good relationship with Sevilla’s deputy to the sporting director, Fernando Navarro.
He is open to hearing potential economic solutions, with Barcelona likely to entice Sevilla with the prospect of signing some of their own players in an attempt to lower the cost of the entire operation.
Even so, getting their hands on Kounde could be extremely tricky as Chelsea are involved in the race too, and will hope to secure his services after missing out narrowly last summer.
Fortunately for Barcelona, they have identified a proven alternative in the form of Koulibaly. With the Senegalese international’s contract expiring at the end of next season, he could be available at a cut-price deal in the summer.
Napoli are soon expected to have a word with Koulibaly, doling out final talks about his future at the club. They are likely to sanction his sale, knowing it could be their final opportunity to generate revenue before the defender leaves the club for free.