Arsenal are reportedly showing interest in Atlanta United star Ezequiel Barco, who is currently a part of the Argentinean team for the Under-20 World Cup.
Spanish publication AS have reported that Arsenal are looking closely at the Under-20 World Cup currently underway in Poland. Ezequiel Barco, who is a part of the Argentine Under-20 side taking part in Poland, is drawing interest from Europe, with the Atlanta United star on the radar of Arsenal and Benfica.
Ezequiel Barco moved to Atlanta United in January, 2018 from Independiente after spending one and a half years in the club’s first-team setup. While he managed to win Copa Sudamericana with Independiente, Barco was an instant hit at Atlanta United, grabbing a key role as the club won the MLS in 2018.
The current season has seen Barco bag 4 goals and an assist in 8 league games. His performances at the Under-20 World Cup though, has been nothing short of brilliant. Barco has scored two goals and provided one in two matches for Argentina so far, with the Latin American nation lodging wins over South Africa and Portugal. This has drawn interest from Europe, with Arsenal and Benfica keen on the 20-year-old.
Unai Emery is looking to add natural wide options to the roster. But, Arsenal have lost the UEFA Europa League final to Chelsea by a scoreline of 4-1, which has condemned them to Europa League for another year. This will affect the budget that the Arsenal board will equip Emery with and the manager will look to deal in shrewd transfers to get the right players in.
Barco could be a masterstroke from the Arsenal manager. The Argentine seems to be in great form and has already shown that he can adjust to new surroundings rather swimmingly. His performances at the Under-20 World Cup will surely raise a lot more attention and the Gunners will likely look to move in quickly.
But, they will find competition in the form of Benfica, who have also been following Barco’s displays closely. The Under-20 World Cup often unearths gems for the top teams to target, with the likes of Diego Maradona, Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguer having shined in the event before proving to be superstars on the grand stage.
It seems Barco is the next Argentinean in line to emerge from the competition. Arsenal might have to move in early to land the 20-year-old before he grabs attention from other top European clubs. Barco though, seems destined for a move to the bigwigs, in the near future or otherwise.