FC Barcelona are currently on the hunt for reinforcements in the midfield department. They have been linked with moves for Ilkay Gundogan and Youri Tielemans lately, both of who are being identified as the perfect fit for the interior position.
However, the club’s other priority is to sign a defensive midfielder, as Sergio Busquets’ current deal expires at the end of the season.
According to Gerard Romero, there has been some disagreement at Barcelona over the club’s desired target in the defensive midfield position. Head coach Xavi Hernandez and sporting director Mateu Alemany are currently favouring a move for Martin Zubimendi.
The Real Sociedad star has experience in La Liga and could settle into Barcelona’s style of football rather quickly. However, club president Joan Laporta wants Barça to sign Ruben Neves.
This is because the Portuguese international has been offered by superagent Jorge Mendes, who harbours a good relationship with Laporta.
Currently plying his trade for Wolverhampton Wanderers, Neves has no shortage of experience either, having featured in 228 competitive matches for the Premier League outfit. With his contract at Molineux also expiring in 2024, he could be available for a relatively cheaper price than Zubimendi.
However, if Barcelona end up signing Neves, Xavi will demand the club to extend the contract of Busquets. The veteran midfielder is still rated highly by the Barça manager, who is not convinced of the quality of Neves.
There have been several reports claiming that the coaching staff at the club has not entirely been won over by the Portuguese international.
Therefore, it will be interesting to see how Barcelona’s pursuit of a defensive midfielder takes shape in the coming months.
It will not come as a surprise to see the Catalans to look for other alternatives in the market as well, especially as the club look to sign cost-effective options.