Man City not worried despite rivals offering ‘best move’ for young star ahead of January window

Valentin Barco, Boca Juniors, July 2023

Valentin Barco warming up before game

Manchester City are reportedly ‘confident’ that they’ll be able to sign Valentin Barco, despite Brighton feeling they can offer him the ‘best move’ ahead of January.

The Seagulls’ scouting department is one of the best in the world. That shows in the fact they’re able to sell their biggest stars every transfer window and yet remain competitive.

The likes of Ben White, Yves Bissouma, Marc Cucurella and Leandro Trossard have left over the past couple of years, and yet Brighton finished ninth two seasons ago, and sixth last season.

They’ve lost Robert Sanchez, Alexis Mac Allister and Moises Caicedo this summer, and yet they’re currently fifth in the league.

As such, it’s worth other sides keeping an eye on the type of players they go after. One of those is Boca Juniors youngster Barco, who Brighton were tracking in the summer.

As were Manchester City, as well as Juventus, and the deal became too complicated for any of them to get over the line.

However, both are set to go back in for the full-back, who’s both scored and assisted in the Copa Libertadores this season.

Man City ‘confident’ of snaring Barco

Football Insider reports City are ‘confident’ that they’ll be able to agree a deal with Boca for the full-back.

The report suggests that both the other clubs that were interested in him in the summer – Brighton and Juventus – will go back in, but City are not worried about either getting in their way.

One report has even suggested they’ve already agreed upon personal terms with Barco.

If that’s the case, they may already have the upper hand in the transfer battle ahead of the January window opening.

Brighton feel they can offer ‘best move’

However, Brighton’s fight will be a fierce one. The Sun reports the Seagulls ‘will make a new move’ for the Argentine ahead of the winter window.

Roberto de Zerbi is reportedly ‘optimistic’ that a deal can be struck with Boca.

That likely stems from the fact he believes his side can offer Barco the ‘best move at this point in his career’.

While the 19-year-old is unlikely to slot straight into the first team with Man City, there seems a much higher chance he’s elevated up the ladder earlier at Brighton.

Given the Seagulls don’t have quite as many top options in their squad – though they’re clearly still a good side  – Barco might get more opportunities there.

It’s reported they ‘may have to pay more for him than expected’ but after bringing in a lot of money in the summer, that shouldn’t be a huge problem.

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