Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Man City ‘very advanced’ for signing of enchanting Argentine star who’s inspiring new Guardiola plan

Pep Guardiola of Manchester City

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola

Manchester City are making strong strides towards the signing of Valentin Barco from Boca Juniors, according to a report that has explained what Pep Guardiola is planning for the left-back.

Barco is preparing to play for Boca Juniors in the Copa Libertadores final on Saturday, against Fluminense. He is one of several players from either squad attracting attention for a European move. Man City have been heavily linked with the full-back in recent weeks.

TEAMtalk recently learned Chelsea are also considering him as a replacement for Marc Cucurella, but Man City have established themselves as a leading contender to sign the 19-year-old.

According to Diario Sport, the Premier League champions are ‘very advanced’ for the signing of Barco, who is ‘enchanting’ a plethora of European suitors.

They will be able to sign him by activating his €10m release clause, which at the equivalent of £8.7m is well within reach for Man City. Barco is about to enter the final year of his contract with Boca Juniors and does not seem willing to renew.

While Man City have been pursuing him, there have been some conflicting claims about whether they would integrate him immediately or loan him out elsewhere to continue his development.

The latest report clarifies that Guardiola sees a space in his Man City squad for Barco to fill with immediate effect. It is deemed that, partially because he can play anywhere along the left flank, he does not need an intermediate step before arriving in the Premier League.

Barco transfer timeframe depends on Copa Libertadores outcome

There is even a chance that Man City will be able to get a closer look at Barco before the end of the year. If Boca Juniors win the Copa Libertadores, they will qualify for the Club World Cup, which last season’s Champions League winners have already booked their place in.

The report alternatively hints that if Fluminense beat Boca Juniors to the South American crown, negotiations for Barco’s future could be preponed to December.

One way or another, it appears Man City are intent on getting their hands on Barco in 2024. Left-back is a position they could do with another natural option for, even if Guardiola’s system is increasingly flexible.

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