The Catalan giants were humbled across various turfs this season and would be itching to make statement signings that send a message across Europe. There are several areas that need to be addressed by the incoming manager. Valverde has drawn up a transfer list and here are the top five players that FC Barcelona are targeting this summer.
Ever since Xavi decided to see out his career in Qatar back in 2015, Barcelona’s mid field hasn’t been the same. Once renowned for ball possession and control, those factors have drastically diminished with the team relying more on the front three. However if there is one player in world football today that comes close to Xavi in terms of ability, it is none another than Marco Verratti. Xavi himself has admitted he would like to see the Italian in the Blaugrana stripes.There are many stumbling factors such as the cost which would hover around the 100M mark and also negotiating with PSG who are in no need of money and wouldn’t like seeing a world class player leave their ranks.
With the Barcelona board letting Dani Alves leave, a huge void has been created that must be filled immediately if the team hopes to compete with best across Europe. The man to fill this void has been identified as Arsenal’s right back Hector Bellerin. 2014/15 was a breakout season as the Spaniard put in impressive displays and thus cemented his place in the playing eleven.
A La Masia graduate with blistering pace, the Spaniard was always touted with a return to Barcelona like former Gunners captain Cesc Fabregas. Now with Catalans needing a player of his profile the rumours may not remain rumours after all.
The young French prodigy burst on the scene last season. Playing his trade in Ligue 1, he garnered lots of attention from various top clubs but ended up being snapped by Borussia Dortmund. Week in and week out Demebele further reinstated his credentials racking up 18 assists and 10 goals across various competitions. Barcelona are going to try their hand again and hope they can allure him to share the dressing room with Leo Messi for the coming season.
Another alternative to primary target is Benefica Right back Nelson Semedo. In 2016/17, Semedo scored 2 goals and provided 12 assists playing for Benfica. Another young player who’s playing style has been likened to Dani Alves.
Various other clubs such as Bayern Munich and Manchester United have also shown keen interest in the Portuguese as such players are hard to come by. The most critical factor here would be if Barcelona do manage to convince Bellerin and the price tag as neither would come cheap.
It is widely reported that Barcelona are looking to shore up their attack and reduce the ever increasing burden on the fearsome front three ‘MSN’. Ousmane Dembele is the priority as he has the skill and is young, hence Barcelona would be securing a player for the long term. If priority number one isn’t secured, the manager has drawn up fall back options such as Mahrez and Vitolo. Mahrez has already publicity mentioned his desire to leave former champions Leicester City this summer. Vitolo has been a consistent performer for Sevilla and is an experienced campaigner and would bring in a different profile than the players already on board.