The summer transfer window is just around the corner and clubs have begun their recruitment drive for next season. Barcelona are among the clubs looking to strengthen their squad ahead of the 2022-23 season and a new forward is at the top of their wishlist, as per the report.
According to the aforementioned source, Blaugrana have identified Brazilian duo Raphinha and Antony as potential targets ahead of the summer. As per UOL Esporte journalist Bruno Andrade, the La Liga giants will only be moving for one of them in the transfer window.
As per the report, Antony, in particular, is receiving strong support from Alves at Barcelona. The 38-year-old defender appears to be keen to see the fellow Brazilian at Camp Nou next season.
Antony shared the dressing room with the right-back during his time at Brazilian club Sao Paulo. As the two are also team-mates in the Brazilian national team, they have played 32 matches together.
The report indicates that Antony and Alves maintain a good relationship with each other. The two could now link up with each other in Catalonia if Barcelona decide to step up their interest in the Ajax forward.
The 22-year-old, who is valued at around €40 million by Ajax, will not be an easy target for the Blaugrana. There are reportedly at least three Premier League clubs, including Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool, in the race for Antony. Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich have also been credited with an interest in him.
Antony, who has a contract with Ajax until 2025, has made 33 appearances across all competitions for the Dutch giants this season. He has scored 12 goals and provided 10 assists in the process.
Alves, on the other hand, rejoined the Catalans on a free transfer in the winter. The right-back, who has made nine appearances since returning, has his contract with the club expiring at the end of the season.
It is worth noting that the club made major additions to their attack in the January transfer window in the shape on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Adama Traore and Ferran Torres. Traore, though, may not be at Camp Nou next season as there are suggestions that Barcelona could opt against making his loan move from Wolverhampton Wanderers permanent.
Raphinha open to Barcelona move
Apart from Antony, Leeds United star Raphinha is also highly rated at Camp Nou. The Brazilian's agent Deco is a former Barcelona player and maintains a good relationship with the club.
Deco has had positive talks with Blaugrana this month, according to Fabrizio Romano. While there are no negotiations between the two clubs yet, Raphinha is said to be open to a move to Xavi's side.
Raphinha has scored nine goals and provided three assists from 27 Premier League appearances for Leeds this season.