Barcelona identify Arsenal target as perfect Cancelo alternative

Cameron Smith
Cameron Smith
  • Updated: 2 Apr 2024 20:05 BST
  • 3 min read
Joao Cancelo, Barcelona, 2023/24

Barcelona have reportedly sounded out Fiorentina defender Michael Kayode as a possible alternative to Manchester City’s Joao Cancelo.

Kayode, 19, has shone for the Serie A side this season and has attracted significant transfer interest from Arsenal as a result.

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However, Barcelona have now joined the race to sign him as they prepare a contingency plan in the event that Cancelo does not arrive on a permanent deal.

READ MORE: Man City 'not willing' to sell Cancelo to Arsenal

The Portuguese international is currently on a season-long loan deal at the Blaugrana and Barca are hoping to sign him this summer following his impressive form during the 2023-24 campaign.

However, Man City’s asking price may prove a problem for the cash-strapped Spanish giants and they may be forced to pursue a cheaper alternative instead.

Kayode has been identified as one such player, according to Fichajes, as Barcelona look to sign an out-and-out right-back following Jules Kounde’s struggles since his move from Sevilla.

The France international is a very talented player, but he has been forced to play out of position for the majority of his Barca career, which is something the club are actively attempting to fix.

READ MORE: Barcelona could lose out on next Messi despite scouting him for a year

Arsenal want Michael Kayode

Michael Kayode, Fiorentina
© IMAGO - Michael Kayode, Fiorentina

Arsenal were reported to have sent scouts to Florence to watch Kayode play in the 3-0 win over Cagliari in October, a game in which he grabbed an assist, while the 21-year-old’s agent recently admitted that Mikel Arteta’s side are interested in his client.

“Yes [Arsenal want him], but Fiorentina must not be worried. There’s a contract and Michael is happy in this club and in this team,” Andrea Ritorni, Kayode’s representative, said.

“Obviously, several Premier League clubs have scouted him, but it’s normal and is part of life and football. Fiorentina tied him down with a nice contract and many bonuses, so we want to do well with La Viola.”

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