Transfer Rumors and News

These are the seven names on Barcelona’s list of midfield targets this summer

One of the big priorities for Barcelona sporting director Deco in the upcoming summer transfer window is the signing of a new defensive midfielder. The departure of Sergio Busquets and the poor performances of Oriol Romeu have forced the improvisation of Andreas Christensen in the crucial “pivot” position, and the club’s number one job is the signing of a high-level player for that role.

Many names have been linked with the position for months now, but according to Mundo Deportivo the club have now settled on a list of seven targets who range from dream signings to low-cost options and all have, in the club’s mind, the quality needed to make a decisive improvement in a position of need for Barça.

The first player is Everton’s Amadou Onana, who seems to be the club’s preference given his age, his potential, his physical profile and his ability on the ball. Everton are expected to sell the Belgium international this summer but want a big transfer fee, but Barça are hoping that a potential relegation will force the Toffees to lower the asking price and allow Barça to join the race for a player who would welcome a move to Catalonia.

The next two names are the dream singings: Bayern Munich’s Joshua Kimmich and Real Sociedad’s Martin Zubimendi. The two have been long-time dream targets of manager Xavi Hernández, who has reportedly requested the signing of either one of those players as one of the conditions to reverse his decision to leave in the summer and stay for next season. Xavi believes both players are perfect pivots in the positional game, but neither player has expressed a desire to leave their clubs yet. If they do, however, and Xavi does indeed stay on as manager, we will no doubt see both of those names heavily linked with a move to Camp Nou.

A name that has gained a lot of strength in recent hours is Nice’s Khéphren Thuram, who has blossomed into one of the best defensive midfielders in Ligue 1 and is attracting plenty of interest around Europe. While he doesn’t fit the profile of a positional pivot like Busquets, Barça’s decision-makers believe his physical abilities could be a good fit for a new manager who might prefer more of a “destroyer” type of number 6, and his €35 million valuation makes it at least possible for Barça to pursue a deal.

The final two names are low-cost options, much like Oriol Romeu last summer. Girona’s Aleix García has been one of the best pivots in La Liga this season and grew in importance in the team with the departure of Romeu to Barça. Aleix has made public his dream of playing for his favorite club and Barça believe they can sign García for €15 million or simply by including players in the operation, which would make a deal even easier for the Blaugrana given their financial issues.

Then there’s Arsenal’s Jorginho, another long-time target of the Catalans dating back to his time at Napoli. The 32-year-old is not expected to sign a new contract with the Gunners and could become a free agent, which would make his arrival very easy for Barça. Jorginho has rediscovered his best football under Mikel Arteta and is a good fit for Xavi’s system, but his age is the biggest impediment to any real chance of a deal.

So these are the seven names in Barça’s list of targets for the pivot position. Who is your favorite and why, Barça fans?

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