Barcelona will reportedly battle it out with Manchester City in the race for the signing of former La Masia prospect Xavi Simons, who wants to leave PSG.

According to a report from Fichajes, Manchester City are ready to rival Barcelona in their pursuit of 18-year-old Paris Saint-Germain midfield sensation Xavi Simons.

The 18-year-old Simons spent nine years on the books of Barcelona in their fabled La Masia youth setup after having joined from the CD Thader Rojales academy in 2010. Regarded as one of the finest young prospects to be coming through the ranks at the Catalan club, the young midfielder opted to leave for PSG in 2019 in search of a faster pathway to the first team.

Since moving to the French capital, the teenage prodigy has been performing well for PSG’s youth sides and even made his senior debut in February earlier this year, aged 17 years and nine months. However, he has been able to add just one more first-team appearance to his tally since, with manager Mauricio Pochettino not calling upon him regularly.

Simons has continued to impress for the club’s Under-19 setup in the UEFA Youth League, scoring two goals in four games. With his contract running out at the end of the ongoing campaign, the 18-year-old has decided not to sign an extension due to the lack of first-team minutes. 

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Instead, the Dutchman has his sights set on a return to Barcelona, as he hopes to be a part of the youth revolution underway at Camp Nou, with the likes of Ansu Fati, Gavi, Pedri and Nico Gonzalez. The Blaugrana, for their part, are also considering re-signing the 18-year-old attacking midfielder but will now face stiff competition from Manchester City in his pursuit.

The Cityzens have a world-class youth facility where they are churning out some special players like Phil Foden, Liam Delap, Cole Palmer, among others. They remain intent on adding more young talent to their ranks to build them into first-team stars for the future, which has seen them get linked with players such as Arthur Wenderrosky and Arsen Zakharyan.

In addition to that, the Premier League champions are concerned about the future of youngster James McAtee, with his contract running out in 2023. Simons could, thus, potentially be viewed as a replacement for the young Englishman if he were to depart from Manchester City. With the Netherlands Under-19 international out of contract in the summer, it remains to be seen where his next destination lies.

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