Barcelona sporting director Ariedo Braida met with representatives from Inter this week and Mateo Kovacic was the topic of conversation.
Mundo Deportivo reports that Braida, formerly of Inter’s rivals Milan, is finalising a list of targets for when Barca’s transfer embargo is lifted in early 2016.
Braida, President Josep Maria Bartomeu and Coach Luis Enrique are to meet to discuss signings after Sunday’s game against Real Madrid and, with that sit-down in mind, Braida on Tuesday met with Inter counterpart Piero Ausilio, MD say.
Kovacic, an international colleague of Ivan Rakitic and Luka Modric, is the player Braida has identified as a long-term replacement for Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta, MD add, and bolstering the midfield is the priority for when the embargo is lifted.
Braida was told that Kovacic, who signed a contract extension through to 2019 only a few months ago, would cost no less than €40m.
Inter had people in Catalonia to watch Manchester City’s Yaya Toure, as the ex-Barca midfielder is the club’s No.1 target for the summer.