Barcelona are believed to be in pole position in the pursuit of Jose Gaya, who is reportedly expected to leave Valencia in the summer.
According to El Gol Digital, Barcelona are in the driver’s seat, in the race to sign Jose Gaya. The Valencia full-back is widely expected to leave Mestalla after years of services. The player has already declined a contract renewal while the club’s financial turmoil in the aftermath of the pandemic could force them to cash in on their star player.
Gaya is largely courted by Barcelona and Atletico Madrid. However, it appears the left-back prefers a move to Catalonia, ahead of Diego Simeone’s newly crowned Spanish champions, who are tipped to cash in on Renan Lodi in the upcoming summer transfer window.
Gaya has emerged as one of the hottest prospects in the Spanish market this summer, as he is widely regarded as one of the best full-backs in the first division. During his seven professional years at Valencia, the Spaniard has already notched up 261 competitive appearances, notably winning the Copa Del Rey in 2019.
The 26-year-old has also won 14 international caps with Spain and was appointed as the Valencia captain at the start of the 2020/21 campaign.
Jose Gaya’s impressive track record will certainly increase his chances of joining FC Barcelona, who are preparing for a transitional season ahead under Ronald Koeman and newly elected president Joan Laporta.
One of the problem areas for the Blaugrana is the left-back department. Jordi Alba has been an excellent servant for the club over the years, but at the age of 32, his game has deteriorated in recent times. Koeman also does not trust his preferred alternative in Junior Firpo, who is even tipped to depart Nou Camp in the summer.
The arrival of someone like Gaya could certainly help Barcelona ease their transition in the left-back slot. The Spaniard is an established, seasoned professional of Spanish football, who can not only add more quality to the team but also potentially emerge as a leader at the back in this transitional season.
However, it will be interesting to see how much Valencia demand for Jose Gaya, knowing Barcelona certainly cannot afford to spend much in the market this summer.
The Catalans have mostly signed free agents so far, including Lionel Messi’s Argentina teammate Sergio Aguero as well as former La Masia talent Eric Garcia. They might have to offload some of the key players, though, if Barcelona really are to secure the services of Gaya in the summer.