Barcelona are reportedly considering a move for Manchester United outcast Matteo Darmian as a potential backup to first-choice star Jordi Alba.
According to Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona are looking at cheaper alternatives to Junior Firpo. The Catalan giants are scouring for a cover for Jordi Alba at left-back and their search for a cheap alternative to the Real Betis star has led them to Manchester United defender Matteo Darmian.
Junior Firpo has been Barcelona’s primary target. But, according to latest reports, the La Liga champions are not ready to meet the €30 million that Real Betis are demanding for the defender. Instead, the club is now looking for cheaper alternatives and are scouring the likes of Philipp Max and Matteo Darmian.
Darmian has not had the best of campaigns in the last couple of years. Brought in under Louis van Gaal, his involvement in the first-team setup has reduced gradually over the years. The 2018-19 season saw Darmian play just 7 games in all competitions combined.
The Italian has continued to be linked with a return to Italy, with Juventus supposedly looking for a potential replacement for Joao Cancelo, who is drawing interest from Manchester City. Darmian hasn’t even travelled with Manchester United to Norway for the friendly against Kristiansund. Barcelona are now reportedly looking to creep in for the Italian.
Juventus don’t have proper options within the squad to fill the void if Joao Cancelo does end up leaving. In the case that the Portuguese does depart, the Italian giants will be looking to replace Cancelo and provide competition to Mattia de Sciglio for the right side of the defence.
But, the Bianconeri have spent a lot already to fill other positions and will be looking to bring in an experienced star without spending much. Darmian fits the profile. The Italian has Serie A experience under his belt and has shown he can do a job whenever called upon.
The fact that he will come cheap, with Mundo Deportivo claiming United are willing to do a deal around €10 million, is an incentive that might be driving the interest from Juventus and Barcelona.
The Catalans have, like Juventus, spent a lot to bring in players in other areas and are now hesitant to spend lavishly on a left-back cover. Juventus and Barcelona will both provide Darmian with a step up, with Manchester United not able to qualify for the Champions League for the upcoming season.
Darmian is primed to exit Manchester United and if Juventus manage to keep Manchester City at bay and retain Joao Cancelo, Barcelona might be the Italian’s destination.