Barcelona manager Quique Setien has confirmed that the club are indeed interested in signing Inter striker Lautaro Martinez in the upcoming Summer transfer window.
The 22-year-old Argentine national team forward has been heavily linked with a switch to the Blaugrana for some time now with reports stating Barcelona want to do a player(s) plus cash deal for him.
Inter have made their demands clear for the former Racing Club with report stating they have told Barcelona they want €90 million plus Arturo Vidal on a permanent basis and Antoine Griezmann on loan or his €111 million release clause paid in full.
“He’s an important player, a great player, and Barcelona are always interested in great players, of course,” Setien told Milan based newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, with the interview appearing in today’s print edition.
“But in these times without football, a different name comes out every day. There’s also been talk of Neymar. And I’m sure you’ll ask me about Fabian Ruiz.”
Setien proceeded to ask if Lionel Messi has done anything to help the club to sign Lautaro, who he plays alongside in the national team.
“You’ll have to ask him about that. All jokes aside, all good players can attract Barcelona’s interest, that is clear. It’s also true that, for many players, the fact of being able to play with Messi represents a huge incentive.”
Setien also ruled out the possibility of Messi departing the club in the coming months after reports emerged linking him to various clubs, including Inter.
“It won’t happen. Messi and Barcelona will always be together. That’s just the way it is. Leo has been at Barca for 20 years and no-one could justify a breakup.”