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Reports: Barcelona interested in £25m Manchester United star

Sevilla v Athletic Bilbao - UEFA Europa League Quarter Final: Second Leg
Valverde is on the lookout for defensive players
ANALYST

What's the story?

La Liga giants Barcelona are planning to make a move for Manchester United defender Daley Blind according to Spanish media outlet Marca.

An injury setback to Samuel Umtiti and potential departure of Javier Mascherano might force the manager Ernesto Valverde to jump into the transfer market in January in search of new defensive players and the former Athletic Bilbao manager has identified Blind and Lazio's central defender Stefan de Vrij as the players to strengthen his squad if Marca are to be believed.

In case you didn't know...

La Liga league table leaders Barcelona received a major injury setback after key defender Umtiti was been ruled out until February due to a muscle injury. The Blaugrana are also on the verge of losing veteran player Mascherano in January, with the Argentinean being linked with multiple clubs.

Barcelona's reported target Blind, on the other hand, is not a wanted player at his current club Manchester United and is reportedly ready to move away from Old Trafford. It has to be also noted that the Dutch international's contract with the Red Devils expires in the Summer of 2018.

The heart of the matter

Barcelona, who have a five-point lead in the La Liga points table, do not want their pursuit of the league title to be affected due to the injury of Umtiti and potential departure of Mascherano.

With that being said, Valverde believes that Blind can bolster his side's defence. The player's countryman de Vrij is also on the Catalan club's watch list according to Marca. Blind's reading of the game is pretty good, so he can play as a left-back or a centre-back.

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Author's take

Umtiti's injury and Mascherano's possible departure leaves Barcelona with a very weak defence, with Gerard Pique and Thomas Vermaelen as the only available central defenders. This should force the Catalan club to look for players to strengthen their defence.

Even though there have not been any solid reports on the Blaugrana's interest in Blind, the Dutchman could really help the side's current condition and would be a smart move from the Spanish club.

Edited by Amit Mishra
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