Barcelona Transfer Rumours: Southampton and Fiorentina set to fight it out Cristian Tello
Barcelona’s Cristian Tello seems close to sealing a move away from the Nou Camp and has a number of suitors already prying for his signature. Tello has failed to break into the Barcelona first team after graduating from Barcelona’s much-famed football academy, La Masia, and now seems to be away from Luis Enrique plans for the Catalans going into the future.
The 24-year-old had secured a loan move for the second half of last season to Fiorentina and the Viola are seemingly now looking to thrash out a deal for the winger. However, they are not the only ones vying for his services. Premier League side Southampton are also believed to be looking to seal the deal for Barcelona winger Cristian Tello, who is also supposedly a transfer target for Fiorentina's Serie A rivals AC Milan.
Spanish media house El Desmarque claims that both Fiorentina and Southampton have registered their interest and it is only a matter of time before the winger seals a permanent deal away from the Catalans. According to rumours in the English media, Southampton seem to be the favourites to land the youngster with a price tag €12 million being placed on Tello.
Southampton has again seen a number of faces move away in the off-season. Whilst manager Ronald Koeman was enticed away by the new promise of investment at Everton, Graziano Pelle moved to China for a handsome offer. The Saints have also lost the services of Saido Mane and Victor Wanyama, who were sold to Liverpool and Tottenham respectively.
If completed, Tello will be Southampton’s third signing of the season following the arrivals of Nathan Redmond and Pierre Emile-Hojbjerg from Norwich and Bayern Munich respectively.
New manager Claude Puel is likely to look at Tello to fill the gap left by Saido Mane’s departure. Mane, who was brought in by Koeman in the summer of 2014 was an instant hit at the South Coast club, constantly threatening the opposition’s backline with his pace and trickery. The Senegalese international had his best season in the Premier league last year as he scored 11 goals and had six assists to his name, helping Southampton to a sixth-placed finish in the Premier League.
It was earlier reported that Tello would be a part of the deal that would see Andre Gomes move to from Valencia to the Camp Nou. However, those rumours have since been put to bed after Gomes moved to Barca with no sign of Tello moving the other direction.
Since breaking into the Barcelona side in 2011, the 24-year-old has made 59 appearances for the Blaugrana. However, in the last few years, he has seen his playing time dwindle and having to go out on loan to FC Porto before his stint with Fiorentina last season.