3 Blockbuster signings Barcelona could target with £200 million warchest | La Liga 2019-20
Barcelona have endured a topsy turvy campaign in the La Liga so far and the defending champions, after undergoing a season of change, find themselves trailing Real Madrid in the league standings, as Los Blancos are 3 points clear at the top of the table currently.
Ernesto Valverde was sacked midway through the season after reportedly falling out of favour with the players and the hierarchy, with former Real Betis manager Quique Setien taking over the reins from him.
Currently, Barcelona's squad is marred by a combination of deadwood, expensive flops, and overaged superstars. To make matters worse, Lionel Messi is also entering the twilight years of his career and there have been rumours that the Argentine has a clause in his contract, whereby he could walk for free at the end of the season.
Numerous reports have suggested that Barcelona are preparing to spend the big bucks this season, with numbers such as £200 million being thrown around, as they look to return to the heights of yesteryear.
The La Liga side are in need of a rebuild and it is expected that they will splash the cash in the summer, with a host of high-profile players being linked with the club. Here are 3 players Barcelona will look to target at the end of the season, as they look to return to being the best football club in the land.
#3 Rodrigo Moreno (Valencia)
Valencia striker Rodrigo Moreno has long been linked with Barcelona and came close to joining the club in the January transfer window, but the move failed to materialize as Valencia stood firm in their valuation and refused to part with the striker.
Known for his agility and ability to strike the ball with his magical left-footed, Rodrigo has been a reliable performer for Valencia over the years and it could be argued that he is stylistically similar to Antoine Griezmann in many ways.
With Luis Suarez currently injured, there remains a dark cloud over his durability in the coming years, as the Uruguayan's best years are past him.
In Rodrigo, Barcelona could get a striker who has just entered his prime and complement Messi and Griezmann brilliantly in attack, as he comes with a lot of La Liga experience under his belt.
The 28-year-old is expected to lead the line for Spain in Euro 2020 and if he has a good tournament, his value is set to skyrocket. Barcelona will reportedly return to secure his signature in the summer and if the deal happens, it'll make sense for all parties involved - as the player would get his dream move, Barca would solve their striker conundrum and Valencia would be entitled to a hefty fee for a player who has his heart set on another club.
#2 Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan)
Lautaro Martinez, you could argue, has Barcelona written all over him and it remains likely that he will ply his trade with the Spanish giants at some point in his career.
Having moved to the Nerazzurri from Racing Club in his homeland in the summer of 2018, Martinez took a season to settle but has burst onto the scene this time around, having formed a lethal partnership up front with Romelu Lukaku.
With 16 goals and 4 assists to his name across 27 appearances in all competitions, Martinez has been one of the breakthrough starts of the season and is playing a pivotal role in Inter's push for the Serie A title.
At the age of 22, he's at the perfect age to build a team around and his profile suits Barcelona brilliantly, with his quick movement and gritty work rate all desirable qualities for the club.
The Argentine will relish the prospect of playing alongside his compatriot Messi, who he is also set to play in the Copa America at the end of the season, and if the Barcelona talisman has a dialogue with him about a potential transfer, it's hard to see Martinez turning down advances from the Blaugrana.
#1 Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain)
The prodigal son returns, huh? Neymar, since swapping Barcelona for Paris Saint-Germain, in what went down as one of the most shocking transfers in the history of the game, the Brazilian has been plagued by injuries and is reportedly keen on a return to the Camp Nou.
Lionel Messi and co did their best to bring Neymar back to Barcelona this summer but PSG stood firm on their valuation and refused to part with their star man.
The two clubs are expected to revisit the situation once again the summer and this time, a different outcome could be on the cards, with Neymar expected to put his foot down and force a move out of the club, if he isn't allowed to leave amicably.
Ousmane Dembele has lost the patience of everyone involved at the club, as a combination of injuries and poor form have led to his downfall at the club, due to which Barca have made Neymar the top priority once again.
The Brazilian is expected to be the most high profile talking point of the summer transfer window and only time will tell if he reunites with Messi at Barcelona, as the pair alongside Suarez were one of the most feared trios in the history of the game.Published 10 Feb 2020, 18:03 IST