Barcelona are reportedly considering signing Spanish playmaker Juan Mata on a free transfer in the summer, when his contract with Manchester United expires.
As per a report from Goal.com, La Liga champions Barcelona are mulling over the possibility of signing Manchester United superstar Juan Mata in the summer and have already made contact with the Spaniard’s representatives.
The 30-year-old is in the final six months of his contract with the Red Devils and can speak to foreign clubs, and sign a pre-contract agreement over a summer transfer.
This has sparked a flurry of interest in the midfielder, with the likes of Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain also monitoring the situation. Barcelona, however, seem to have gone one step further, having already opened talks with Mata’s representatives over the possibility of a summer transfer.
The Catalans have already signed a midfielder this month, having completed the transfer of Frenkie de Jong from Ajax, with the Dutch sensation set to join the club in the summer.
There are likely to be departures from Camp Nou, however, with Denis Suarez strongly linked with a move to Arsenal, while summer signing Malcom is also linked with an exit. Midfielder Rafinha Alcantara is another who could be on his way out of Barcelona in the summer.
There are question marks over the future of Brazilian playmaker Philippe Coutinho as well, with the rumour mill abuzz with stories of his possible exit. Manchester United are among a number of interested parties to sign the former Liverpool star.
Should any of the aforementioned exits materialise, Barcelona will have a void in the squad, which they are hoping to fill with the signing of Mata at the end of the season.
The 30-year-old joined Manchester United from Chelsea in January 2014 and has gone on to make 208 appearances for the club, scoring 44 goals and setting up 35 more. Mata has won an FA Cup, a League Cup and the UEFA Europa League during his time at Old Trafford.
A firm fan favourite, the Spaniard has seen game time come at a premium this term, more so since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer took over the reins of the club. Mata has just started three of the eight games that the Norwegian has been in-charge for and might be willing to consider an exit, with United looking to add more bodies to their attack.
Manchester United’s Premier League rivals Arsenal too, are believed to be interested in taking the creative midfielder on a free transfer in the summer. The Gunners’ manager Unai Emery worked with Mata during the pair’s time at Valencia and is keen on a reunion with his former ward, amid uncertainties over the future of Mesut Ozil.
Mata, who earns £140,000 per week at Manchester United, is understood to have held talks over a new contract with the Red Devils. But, little progress has been made on that front, leaving the midfielder considering other possibilities.
It remains to be seen, however, if he chooses to return to Spain in the summer or instead moves to Arsenal, or if Manchester United are able to convince him to sign an extension and stay put at Old Trafford.