Barcelona look set to resist any approach for Ousmane Dembele this summer after the Frenchman was linked with Manchester United.
The World Cup winner has emerged as a potential signing for United after efforts for Jadon Sancho appeared to fade.
United are desperately trying to bolster their attack by signing the Dortmund man. Those hopes though remain in the balance after a fresh warning from Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke.
As such, United are reported to be exploring a number of alternatives. Juventus winger Douglas Costa was mentioned as a potential option on Tuesday. However, reports in Spain have also linked United to Dembele amid talk of a Barcelona fire sale.
Dembele joined Barcelona in a then club record €105m move from Borussia Dortmund in summer 2017.
However, he has been badly hampered by injuries since moving to Spain. As such, he has featured in just 74 games, scoring 19 goals.
Despite his struggles, Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has described the Frenchman as ‘untouchable’.
In a wide-raging interview, he called the World Cup winner one of a handful of stars who won’t be allowed to leave.
Asked which players were ‘non-transferable’ this summer, Bartomeu replied: “Leo Messi and many other players.
“But it would be a cliché to just say Leo Messi. Messi is the best player in history but there are other non-transferable ones.
“There are many young players too.
“Also Ter Stegen, Lenglet, De Jong, Semedo, Dembélé, Griezmann. They are players that we count on a lot and who have come to spend many years at Barca.”
United, however, remain determined to sign Sancho and will continue to press for the Dortmund man.
Pundit wants United to target striker
United, meanwhile, have been told to sign a “proper No 9” this summer, rather than spending big on Sancho or Dembele.
In fact, pundit, Jamie O’Hara, has named four striking options that would provide an upgrade on Anthony Martial in their side.
He reckons Edinson Cavani, Raul Jimenez and Harry Kane would all be obvious additions. He also had a surprise name to throw in the mix too.
“Jimenez, Harry Kane, Cavani, Danny Ings,” O’Hara said on talkSPORT.
“There will come a time where [Tottenham] are going to have to [sell Kane] if they don’t win a trophy because it’s Manchester United, they’re the biggest club in the world.”
Explaining his decision to back Ings, O’Hara added: “Danny Ings had a fantastic season at Southampton, for me. Also Jimenez from Wolves.
“If they could get Jimenez or Cavani…”