Barcelona have reportedly set their sights on Willian, and are plotting a move to bring the Chelsea winger to Camp Nou in the summer.
According to a report by Spanish publication El Gol Digital, Willian is the subject of interest from Barcelona, who are looking to bolster their attack further in the summer. The Blaugrana are eyeing the Chelsea winger as a low-cost way of reinforcing their attacking options.
Willian has largely been an integral figure for Chelsea since joining the West Londoners from Shakhtar Donetsk in the summer of 2013. A picture of industry and tirelessness, the player is known to be one of the most hard working individuals in the Premier League.
But, his stature at Chelsea has gone down since the arrival of Antonio Conte, with the Italian reducing Willian into a bit-part player. The Brazilian has started just 13 Premier League games this season, and it appears as if his time at the club could be about to come to an end, especially with suitors like Barcelona emerging in his pursuit.
The Catalans have been flying high this season, with their only loss of the entire campaign coming in the Copa del Rey – a tournament whose final they have reached now. In the league though, there’s no catching Barcelona, who are seven points clear of Atletico Madrid on top of the table.
— Breathe Chelsea (@BreatheChels) February 17, 2018
But, in recent weeks, their output in front of goal has reduced, with the team starting to depend heavily on Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez. While Barcelona are also counting on Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho to provide a burst of goals, the duo are more of playmakers than goalscorers.
On top of that, both Dembele and Coutinho are taking time to settle at Barcelona, which does not help the Blaugrana, considering the fact that Aleix Vidal, loanee Gerard Deulofeu and Andre Gomes haven’t been productive either.
Willian is, thus, a viable short-term target for Barcelona, who could get the Chelsea man’s best years at Camp Nou while also adding dynamism in their attack by adding a pacy outlet out wide. And they could have a closer look at him when the two clubs face off in the Champions League Round of 16.
What also makes a possible summer deal an attractive one for the La Liga heavyweights is that he will not come in a big-money move, meaning Barcelona could practically finance the deal should they offload the likes of Denis Suarez and Aleix Vidal in the summer, as has been widely speculated.
Chelsea, on the other hand, are open to the idea of selling Willian, but will only let go of the player if they can sign a replacement for him. For all intents and purposes though, this looks like a deal that could see the light of the day and help Barcelona bolster their attack on the cheap.