Barcelona have been handed some bad news in their bid to bring in Darwin Nunez as a replacement for striker Luis Suarez who left in the summer and joined Atletico Madrid.
Nunez’s agent, Edgardo Lasalvia, told Sport that the 21-year-old is not thinking about a transfer currently and “will remain at Benfica at least until 2022.” The 21-year-old joined the Portuguese side in the summer from Almeria.
Barcelona have “have stepped up their interest” in Nunez recently after an impressive start to life at Benfica, according to ESPN. The youngster has five goals and five assists in 10 appearances in all competitions for Jorge Jesus’s side.
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Benfica Expecting Big Fee For Nunez
Another potential stumbling block to any deal is the fact that Nunez is unlikely to come cheap, particularly if he continues he impress with his performances for his new club.
We got it right. We must not forget that he is a kid, he is 21 years old, there is a lot about the game that he does not know yet. He will learn with me and Benfica.
All this decision-making ability, finishing and speed…He was Benfica’s most expensive purchase, and when there is no pandemic, he will be the most expensive sale. He will be a world-class player. Unfortunately for me, maybe I will lose him in a short time.
Finances are an issue at Barcelona currently. The club’s interim president, Carles Tusquets, stated in October that the club must sell before they can buy and should only try to sign players “if they come at zero cost,” according to the club’s official website.
Goals an Issue at Barcelona?
Goals have been something of an issue for Barca this season in the wake of Suarez’s departure. Lionel Messi has six for the season in all competitions, but all but one of his goals have come from the penalty spot.
Antoine Griezmann has only scored twice in nine appearances for Barca this season and has been outscored by Ousmane Dembele who has three in all competitions since returning from injury.
Meanwhile, Suarez seems to have settled into life quickly at Atletico Madrid and has been banging the goals in for Diego Simeone’s men. The Uruguay international has netted five times in La Liga, only Real Sociedad’s Mikel Oyarzabal has more in Spain’s top flight in 2020-21.
Injuries have also become a problem for Barca. Philippe Coutinho is currently sidelined with a hamstring problem, while Ansu Fati has been ruled out until at least March after undergoing knee surgery.
The club’s interest in Nunez is understandable given the form he’s shown since making the move to Benfica, but it seems unlikely the club will be in a position to make a move for Nunez any time soon.