Barcelona 'leaning towards Lautaro Martinez than a Neymar return'

Barcelona ‘leaning towards Lautaro Martinez than a Neymar return’ due to Inter Milan star’s lower transfer fee and wage demands’ as Spanish giants weigh up move for a new forward

  • Lautaro Martinez would cost less to buy than Neymar for Barcelona this summer
  • The Catalan giants are desperate to sign a new forward at the end of the season
  • Martinez has already been approached and offered a salary of just over £6m
  • Neymar would need to lower his salary from around £22m in order to get a move 

Barcelona are leaning towards a deal to sign Inter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez than Neymar this summer due to his lower transfer fee and wage demands, according to reports in Spain.

The Catalan giants are desperate to bolster their attacking options at the end of the season and find a long-term replacement for Luis Suarez at the same time.

Barcelona have been tracking Martinez for months while there remains some interest from the club in bringing Neymar back to the Nou Camp.

Mundo Deportivo report that Lautaro Martinez would be easier to sign than Neymar for Barca

Neymar has been heavily linked with a move back to Barcelona ever since he joined PSG

But, according to Spanish newspaper Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona are heading more in the direction of Martinez because it would be ‘easier’ to sign the Argentine than welcome back their former player.

That is because Martinez would cost ‘less than half’ of what it would take to sign Neymar.

It is claimed Barcelona have already approached Martinez and offered him a salary of around €7million (£6.1m).

Neymar, meanwhile, would have to significantly lower his financial demands to secure a dream return to Spain that he has been linked with ever since he moved to Paris Saint-Germain in 2017.

It is claimed he earns €36m (£31.5m) a year in France, a figure deemed ‘unattainable’ in Barcelona. 

It is claimed the Brazilian agreed a deal with Barcelona last season that meant he would continue with the contract he had in 2017 before he left for PSG.

Martinez has shone in Serie A this season with Inter Milan, scoring 11 goals in 22 matches

But even that, said to be worth €25m (£22m), is now unaffordable because of the club’s lack of income due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Martinez has shone in Serie A this season with Inter, scoring 11 goals in 22 matches, and has emerged as a serious target. 

And Suarez recently admitted he would have no qualms in seeing yet more competition on the training pitch.  

‘Lautaro is a player who has been growing a lot in Italy, he is a “nine” who has movements that are spectacular and that reflects how great a striker he is,’ he said.

‘It is not that I feel compatible with them but that I’m happy that the club wants to bring in players who come to help and fulfill the same objective as everyone else, that of wanting to win everything.’ 

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