Barcelona are back in the hunt for defender Aymeric Laporte, who is eager to continue plying his trade against Europe's best in the Champions League. The Spanish giants are planning an overhaul under Quique Setien and believe they can negotiate with Laporte, given Manchester City’s European ban.
Barcelona are on a mission to revamp their squad as a handful of priorities have been shortlisted. The defensive backline is considered to have lost its solidarity, with Pique struggling with age and Samuel Umtiti having lost his charm to consecutive injuries. This has led the Spanish giants to anew their interest in former target Aymeric Laporte alongside various other targets.
But Mundo Deportivo has reported that with Manchester City’s UEFA Champions League ban Laporte is open to a move away and is open to signing for Barcelona in the near future. The Frenchman moved from Atletic Bilbao to Manchester City in 2018, with ambitions to feature in Europe’s elite competition and the ban has therefore motivated many clubs to bid in for the French defender.
It was back in 2014 that the Catalans displayed some serious interest in signing the former Bilbao defender, but his asking price saw them shy away from further advances. Pep Guardiola rates the defender highly and often mentioned how difficult it was for his team, in the centre-back’s absence. The 25-year-old defender himself has admitted that he finds comfort in the Sky Blue outfit and is happy to work and develop under Pep Guardiola.
An injury prone season has restricted Laporte to only eight appearances for the Etihad side this campaign. The Cityzens administration are wary of their plea in the Court of Arbitration for Sport. If the appeals don’t yield any fruitful results, many of their assets may well leave in the summer.
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