Revealed: World Cup winner would 'love' to join Barcelona

Suraj Radia
Suraj Radia
  • 30 Jan 2023 16:56 GMT
  • 2 min read
Xavi Barcelona 2022-23

Barcelona have been handed a boost in the pursuit of one of their top transfer targets after being told that he would ‘love’ to join the club, and a summer move is already believed to be in the works.

The Catalan side are in the market for a new right-back and their priority is believed to be Benjamin Pavard, who is out of contract at Bayern Munich next summer and set to leave the club after reportedly falling out with manager Julian Nagelsmann.

Revelo reporter Toni Juanmarti has claimed Pavard has told Barcelona that he would ‘love’ to be a ‘Cule’ and the World Cup winner is likely to be pursued as a long-term replacement for Hector Bellerin, who is likely to join Sporting Lisbon before the January window closes.

OUTS AND INS: Bellerin to move to Sporting

Pavard will likely be allowed to leave Bayern following their signing of Joao Cancelo, who is set to join the German side on loan from Manchester City with an option to buy for around €70m.

While Barca are believed to have identified Pavard as their first choice right-back signing, the club are also considering Villarreal’s Juan Foyth, having failed in a move for him last summer, while Girona’s Arnau Martinez is not thought to be an option.

Barca are currently playing summer signing Jules Kounde as their starting right-back but the Frenchman prefers a centre-back role, prompting the club to focus their attention on Pavard, although they have yet to discover how much a move could cost them.

Pavard, Cancelo and the right-back roundabout

An injury to Noussair Mazraoui combined with the doubts surrounding Pavard’s future prompted Bayern to move for Cancelo after he had a falling out with City boss Pep Guardiola.

The Portuguese international has found gametime limited since returning from the World Cup and he is believed to have had a bust-up with Guardiola following his absence from the team in City’s recent win over Arsenal in the FA Cup.

TARGETS: Barca could face City competition for right-back option

Pavard, meanwhile, has failed to impress Naglesmann with his conduct on and off the pitch and Bayern will look to sell him in the summer having rejected bids for him last year.

Barca will likely make a summer move for Pavard despite Bellerin expecting to depart for Portugal in the coming days, although a move hinges on whether Sporting can first agree a deal to sell Pedro Porro to Tottenham.