Barcelona are reportedly one of the clubs that are interested in signing 23-year-old Italian international Manuel Locatelli from Sassuolo.
According to a report by Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo, Manuel Locatelli is the subject of interest from Barcelona over a possible move in the summer transfer window. The 23-year-old Italian international is also being tailed by the likes of Manchester City, Juventus and Inter Milan.
Manuel Locatelli burst onto the scene when he broke into the first-team setup at AC Milan in 2016, aged just 18. However, it is at Sassuolo where he made his breakthrough in Italian football, having first impressed while on loan in the 2018/19 season before joining them permanently in the summer of 2019.
Till date, the 23-year-old has turned out 95 times for the Serie A outfit while also becoming a regular fixture in the Italian national side since making his debut in 2020. His progress has alerted a number of top clubs across Europe, with Barcelona the latest entrants in the race to sign him.
Barcelona are laying down the succession plan for Sergio Busquets, who, despite enjoying a solid 2020/21 campaign, is slowly but surely approaching the final stage of his career. With Miralem Pjanic failing to make an impression in the ongoing campaign while also being on the wrong side of 30, it is prudent for the Blaugrana to keep their options open.
In addition, Pjanic faces an uncertain future at Camp Nou, having reportedly been linked with Atletico Madrid and Manchester United. As a result, it makes sense for Barcelona to consider a move for a holding midfielder, with Locatelli being a viable target for them.
Apart from the 23-year-old, the Catalan giants also have Eduardo Camavinga and Mikel Merino in their sights, suggesting that they are quite serious to identify the perfect successor for Busquets. However, Barcelona face stiff competition in pursuit of Locatelli, who is also being courted by newly-crowned Italian champions Inter Milan, Juventus and Manchester City.
With that being said, it will behoove Barcelona to zero in on their priority for the holding midfield spot between Locatelli, Camavinga and Merino, and it will be interesting to see who becomes their top target. For now, the Italian international has emerged on their radar.