Liverpool and Man Utd target Pau Torres urged to join Barcelona or Real Madrid

Martin Macdonald
Liverpool and Man Utd target Pau Torres urged to join Barcelona or Real Madrid

One player set to be at the centre of a transfer tug-of-war this summer is Villarreal defender Pau Torres who is wanted wanted by Liverpool, Manchester United, Barcelona and Real Madrid.

The 2020/21 campaign has seen Torres develop into one of the best young defenders in La Liga and is fully established within the starting XI for Spain, too.

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Apart from a loan deal away at Malaga for the 2018/19 season, Torres has been at Villarreal his whole career, including at youth level, and has came into his own this season so much so that elite clubs around Europe are starting to circle.

He has suitors in the Premier League, but current boss at Villarreal Unai Emery believes he should ignore interest from England to sign for one of the Clasico sides.

“If Atletico de Madrid, Real Madrid and Barcelona want Villarreal players, it’s a source of pride,” the former Arsenal manager said, as quoted by Marca.

“And Pau Torres? Double, because he’s also from here. If he leaves here, he has to go to Real Madrid or Barcelona.”

Who could sign Pau Torres?

Real Madrid have a long-standing interest in Torres and that has only intensified after they missed out on one of their other defensive targets, Dayot Upamecano, who joined Bayern from RB Leipzig recently.

Los Blancos still do not know whether they will have the talismanic figure of Sergio Ramos within their ranks next season, with the club captain’s contract set to expire in the summer with no recent signs of an extended deal been agreed upon.

Real Madrid were planning on acquiring another centre-back with or without Ramos, and Marca report that the club view Torres both as an ideal partner or an ideal replacement for the World Cup winner.

Torres has a release clause believed to be €50 million. With that brings only a small number of teams who can afford him this summer, with money tight at most clubs due to the pandemic.

Man Utd are actively searching for a new, long-term partner for Harry Maguire, and have been linked with Upamecano, Kalidou Koulibaly and even Ramos in the past.

For Liverpool, they have had major defensive issues this season due to the long-term injuries suffered by Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez, and although they signed Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies in January, Torres would present a significant upgrade on that duo.

Barcelona want a new centre-back, too, but due to their current financial situation, they are likely out of the running for the Spaniard.