FC Barcelona are seemingly growing fond of the idea of signing Atletico Madrid’s Saul Niguez, who could cost around €120 million.

According to Transfermarketweb, FC Barcelona have stepped up their pursuit of signing Saul Niguez in the upcoming January transfer window. The Atletico Madrid superstar has been a subjected with a long-term interest from the Catalan giants, who are now seemingly getting desperate of adding further midfield options at their disposal following the retirement of Andres Iniesta at the end of last season.

It is believed that the Blaugrana are leading the chase for Saul. But, any efforts of signing him in the upcoming winter transfer window would require Barcelona to lodge a whopping bid of €120 million or perhaps more.

Saul’s current contract with Atletico expires in 2026, which helps the Madrid outfit hold a massive leverage over his transfer fee even though he was reported to have a release clause embedded in his current long-term contract with the club.

A product of the Real Madrid youth academy, later nurtured by Atleti, Saul Niguez has blossomed into a world-class individual under Diego Simeone and in the past three or four years, he has become an integral figure for both and club country. Saul’s initial rise to prominence began in the 2014/15 season when he most notably scored a stunning goal against FC Bayern in the Champions League knockout stages.

Although his splendid performance against the Bavarians wasn’t actually his breakout moment, it did show the footballing world as to what he’s capable, even in the highest level of football. And since then, Saul managed to establish himself as a regular fixture in the Atletico first team, notching up 100 La Liga appearances within the past three seasons.

MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 06: Saul Niguez of Atletico de Madrid celebrates scoring their opening goal during the La Liga match between Club Atletico de Madrid and SD Eibar at Estadio Vicente Calderon on May 6, 2017 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

Time to seek pastures new? (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

His proficiency in almost every aspect of midfield play coupled with his suave and swagger makes him an attractive target for any club in the world, especially FC Barcelona.

Over the years, the Catalans have lacked an all-rounder in midfield, who can not only extend himself as a utility player in midfield but also has the quality to make a difference at the highest level. And Saul, in that regard, fits the bill perfectly.

The Atletico Madrid superstar excels in ball-circulation, transition and build-up but at the same time, he’s also an excellent ball-carrier, who can easily carry the ball around the dangerous half-spaces. But, what makes him an even more appealing target is his attacking prowess as he is blessed with superb vision and excellent close-control, which helps him skip through opposition at ease.

Furthermore, Saul is already flourishing under Luis Enrique-led Spanish national team, making him a tailor-made fit for a club like Barcelona, who, more or less adhere to same tactical philosophy as Enrique.  Having said that, it remains to be seen whether or not Atletico will be happy in selling one of their prized assets to their league rivals.

Only time will tell as to how long this transfer saga persists as we near the arrival of the winter transfer window.

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