Chelsea, Newcastle United rival Manchester City in Valentin Barco pursuit

Chelsea and Newcastle United have reportedly joined Manchester City in the race to sign Boca Juniors left-back Valentin Barco.

According to 90min, Premier League sides Newcastle United and Chelsea are both interested in Boca Juniors full-back Valentin Barco, but the Magpies and Blues are facing competition from division rivals Manchester City and Brighton & Hove Albion, among other clubs.

Barco is a highly-rated Argentina Under-20 international who can play as a left-back or a left-winger. With Argentine giants Boca Juniors since joining their youth setup in 2014, the 19-year-old has emerged as one of the brightest young talents in Argentina, and the left-back has already made 22 senior appearances for Boca Juniors.

The teenager is under contract at Boca Juniors until December 2024, and his deal is understood to include a £8 million release clause. However, Boca are working to agree on a new contract, so they can increase his clause or even remove it altogether.

Brighton have been in pole position to land Barco, but Manchester City are planning to hijack the Seagulls’ move with a lucrative offer above the release clause amount. City have tapped into the Argentine market in recent years, snapping up some of the best talents, such as Julian Alvarez and Maximo Perrone.

 Embed from Getty Images

Brentford, Wolves, and Nottingham Forest have all scouted him in recent weeks. Away from the Premier League, Celtic, Bayer Leverkusen, Borussia Dortmund, Benfica, Porto, Roma, Juventus, PSG, and Monaco are all keeping tabs on his situation. The list of suitors alone should tell you how gifted the young Argentine is.

Free-spenders Chelsea are one of those who have been credited with interest. Chelsea have adopted a transfer policy to lure some of the world’s brightest young talents to Stamford Bridge. Though it has thus far yielded little tangible on-field success, this policy is certainly an exciting one.

South America has been a particularly happy fishing pool for the Blues lately, with the likes of Andrey Santos, Kendry Paez, Angelo Gabriel, and Deivid Washington joining Chelsea for sizeable fees this past summer.

They have gone to great lengths to secure the aforementioned prospects, beating significant competition in the process, something they will have to do again if they are to win the race for Barco.

As for interest from Newcastle, towering defender Dan Burn has remained Newcastle’s first-choice left-back at the start of the current season, but that might change down the line following the capture of 18-year-old talented full-back Lewis Hall from Chelsea in the summer transfer window.

They could still do with another left-back, considering Burn is very limited in that position, while Matt Targett has fallen out of favour lately under Eddie Howe.

Barco’s got the speed and ball control you would associate with a more attacking player, and accordingly, he’s a very forward-thinking left-back indeed, regularly pressing forward at pace to support and start attacks. He’s also a very good reader of the game, and a strong tackler, and his turnover rate in the defensive third is impressive, attributes that will suit Howe’s system.

All in all, the 19-year-old is a top talent for the future, and it will be interesting to see who will win the race for his signature.

Leave Comment


Welcome Back!

Login to your account below

Retrieve your password

Please enter your username or email address to reset your password.