Liverpool have reportedly set their sights on Inter Milan and Italy midfield mainstay Nicolo Barella, who is also a transfer target for Barcelona this summer.
According to a report from Transfer Market Web, Premier League giants Liverpool have expressed an interest in signing Nicolo Barella from Inter Milan this summer. The Italian midfielder is also a subject of transfer enquiry by La Liga bigwigs Barcelona.
Barella came through the ranks at Cagliari and made quite the splash when he burst onto the first-team scenes, prompting Inter Milan to sign him in 2019. Brought in on an initial loan deal, the midfielder’s transfer was made permanent last year, and he has proven to be an excellent acquisition for the Nerazzurri thus far.
Barella has racked up 87 appearances in his two years with Inter Milan, scoring seven goals and setting up 21 more. The 24-year-old was one of their best players as they romped home to a first Serie A title in eleven years under the guidance of Antonio Conte. Currently impressing at the UEFA Euro 2020 with Italy, the midfielder has popped up on the radars of several top clubs, including Liverpool and Barcelona.
It is no secret that Liverpool are in the market for a new central midfielder this summer following the departure of long-term mainstay Georginio Wijnaldum, who ran down his contract to seal a free transfer to Paris Saint-Germain. Furthermore, the likes of Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have proven to be unreliable in recent seasons due to their fitness woes, while James Milner will soon be 36 years old.
So, it makes sense for Jurgen Klopp & co. to bolster their midfield unit this summer with a top-class addition, which is where Barella enters the fray. However, recent reports have indicated that LOSC Lille’s Renato Sanches is also an important target for the Merseysiders. As for Barella, the Reds may have to battle with La Liga bigwigs Barcelona, who are also on the lookout for reinforcements in the middle of the park.
The Catalans spent a good part of the last year chasing Wijnaldum only to see him end up at PSG. With there being question marks over the futures of midfielders Miralem Pjanic and Carles Alena, as well as the uncertain contract situation of youth prodigy Ilaix Moriba, bolstering the midfield department would be a smart move for Ronald Koeman to avoid overburdening the likes of Frenkie de Jong, Pedri and co.
Barella, to that end, has been identified as a target by the Blaugrana – an alternative for former target Wijnaldum. Apart from Liverpool and Barcelona, the 24-year-old is also said to be on the radars of Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain as well. Inter Milan, however, are intent on keeping hold of him amid the widespread interest and have the upper hand as the midfielder is contracted to them till 2024.