Barcelona will definitely sign a striker in the summer transfer window, according to former Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger.
“Barcelona has always bought the greatest players. Personally, I’m not sure that Suarez needs to be replaced. They can add another striker because it’s true that Suarez and Messi are the main contributors and they might need somebody else who can score goals.
“I still think Griezmann at some stage will start to score goals, he doesn’t look completely adapted, maybe now after confinement, he will be refreshed because he’s a good goalscorer as well. But I’m convinced they will buy another striker as well.”
Messi is Barcelona’s top La Liga goalscorer this season with 19 goals, while Suarez has 11 despite having been out of action since January because of a knee injury. Antoine Griezmann has managed eight so far in his first season with the club.
Inter Waiting for Barcelona to Make Lautaro Move
Inter Milan are waiting to see if Barcelona make a move for Martinez. The Argentine has a €111 million ($125m) release clause in his contract that expires in July. Chief executive officer Beppe Marotta told La Gazzetta dello Sport he is waiting to hear from the Catalan giants.
“There’s a clause that expires on July 7. We’ll see what Barcelona want to do first and then we will sit down at the table with the player and we will see what we will do.”
Martinez has impressed at Inter since joining from Argentine club Racing in 2018. He has netted 11 times in Serie A in 2019-20 and looks to be a good replacement for 33-year-old Luis Suarez at Barcelona.
Racing president, Victor Blanco, told Radio La Plata in May that the striker is “close” to a move to Barcelona amid speculation about the striker’s future.
However, Martinez’s high price is likely to prove a problem for Barcelona. The Catalans will not look to pay his clause in full and will instead try to include players in the deal, according to Fernando Polo at Mundo Deportivo.
Neymar Return Played Down
Yet Neymar is another player who has been frequently linked with a move to Barcelona, although those claims have been played down by La Liga president Javier Tebas.
The 57-year-old told reporters he is expecting a quiet transfer window with clubs having been hit hard financially by the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Neymar-type transfers will not happen. There may be exchange deals but that does not bring money into the league. There will be a few big moves, but nothing like we have seen before. The transfer market will be subdued.”
Barcelona do appear keen to strengthen their aging attack this summer. Their attempts to sign Martinez have already dominated the headlines for some time and may continue to do so for a while yet.