Barcelona have reportedly identified Benfica’s Uruguayan striker Darwin Nunez as a potential candidate to replace Luis Suarez at Camp Nou.
As per a report from ESPN, La Liga giants Barcelona have intensified their pursuit of Benfica striker Darwin Nunez, with the 21-year-old Uruguayan being lined up as the long-term replacement for Luis Suarez.
Nunez spent time at the academies of La Luz and San Miguel de Artigas before joining the Penarol youth setup in 2013. Having progressed through the ranks at the club, he made his first-team debut in 2017 and went on to make 22 appearances for the Uruguayan outfit, scoring four goals.
Nunez moved to Europe in 2019, joining Spanish second division outfit UD Almeria. The 21-year-old enjoyed a fine season at the club, racking up 16 goals and 3 assists from 32 appearances, prompting Benfica to sign him in the summer transfer window.
Since moving to Portugal, the South American forward has been in good touch, having already produced an impressive tally of four goals and five assists in nine matches across all competitions. His rise to prominence has piqued the interest of La Liga giants Barcelona.
The Catalans lost star goalscorer, Luis Suarez, this past summer, with the Uruguayan leaving the club for rivals Atletico Madrid in acrimonious circumstances. While Barcelona tried to sign Memphis Depay from Olympique Lyon to replace the veteran forward, a move for the Netherlands international failed to materialise.
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And, as per the aforementioned report, the Blaugrana have now turned their focus towards Nunez, who had been on the club’s radar during the summer window as well. Indeed, Barcelona held informal discussions with Almeria over the possibility of signing the 21-year-old before loaning him back to the club for another season.
However, negotiations ceased once Benfica entered the picture and eventually ended up signing Nunez in a deal worth €24 million. Barcelona, though, are continuing to monitor the Uruguayan’s progress and will consider making a swoop for him in the near future.
The dearth of a centre-forward is something that Barcelona will need to address at the earliest. And having failed to bring in both Lautaro Martinez and Depay, a move for Nunez, who has shown quite a lot of promise in his burgeoning career would be a step in the right direction.
The Catalans are currently in a state of turmoil after president Josep Maria Bartomeu and the board of directors resigned. Nevertheless, transfer plans are proceeding without any hiccups, with director Ramon Planes working to get deals over the line.
Apart from a centre-forward, a new defender is also on the agenda for Barcelona, with the club planning renewed attempts to sign Manchester City’s Eric Garcia in January.