Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has reportedly emerged as a fallback option for Barcelona if the deals for Antoine Griezmann and Neymar fail.
According to a report by Spanish publication Sport, Barcelona are considering their backup options in case they are unable to sign either of Antoine Griezmann or Neymar. The La Liga champions have identified Manchester United superstar Marcus Rashford as a possible fallback option if the deals for the two aforementioned forwards fail.
Marcus Rashford has made giant strides since breaking into the Manchester United first-team setup as an emergency option midway through the 2015-16 season. Three years later, he is a regular for both club and country, having established himself as a key forward in both sides.
The latest season saw him become the first-choice striker at Manchester United after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer arrived in the wake of Jose Mourinho’s dismissal. And, he enjoyed his most productive campaign till date, with 13 goals and 9 assists in 47 appearances across all competitions. But, his progress has also caught the eye of big clubs such as Barcelona.
Barcelona are reportedly eager to bolster their attack this summer after a season that saw them falter in the UEFA Champions League once again. While Philippe Coutinho was far from his best all season long, Ousmane Dembele was beset with injury troubles once again and Malcom did not quite enjoy the confidence of Ernesto Valverde.
Valverde himself had been facing an uncertain future as the Barcelona manager not too long ago, but is now set to continue. As far as attacking reinforcements are concerned, former superstar Neymar and Antoine Griezmann have been linked quite heavily in recent weeks.
But, amid concerns over the deals for both the players, the La Liga champions have turned their attention towards Manchester United and Rashford. Valverde is impressed by the fact that he can play all across the frontline, meaning he could even start alongside Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi instead of just being a backup option for the central striker’s role.
And, if the report is anything to go by, Barcelona have already begun talks with Manchester United over a possible summer deal. The Blaugrana are hoping that the good relationship between club president Josep Maria Bartomeu and United CEO Ed Woodward will help in their big to engineer a deal.
However, Manchester United are unwilling to let go of Rashford, who is seen as the perfect candidate to build Solskjaer’s new look squad around. Having said that, the one thing that does put the Premier League heavyweights in a pickle is the fact that Rashford’s deal has just twelve months remaining.
While Manchester United are hoping to tie Rashford down to a bumper new contract, talks have not progressed much. And, if push comes to shove they could be forced to cash-in on Barcelona’s interest, in which case they will demand €100 million in exchange for Rashford’s services.
It now remains to be seen if Manchester United can successfully tie Marcus Rashford down to a new contract, so as to thwart Barcelona. As far as the Catalans are concerned, Rashford only remains a fallback option, who will come to the fore if they are unable to land Neymar or Griezmann.