Barcelona have moved to sign Kashima Antlers midfielder and Japan international Hiroki Abe, according to Diario Sport.
The 20-year-old appeared in all three matches for his nation in this summer’s Copa America tournament, having previously starred for Japan at youth level.
He has played 48 games in the J1 League for Kashima and netted four goals and won the Young Player of the Year award for the division in 2018.
It is said that the Blaugrana will pay the termination clause in the player’s contract – which is unspecified but thought to be minimal – with a deal being concluded this summer.
It is expected that Abe would go into the club’s B side and would be the second Japanese player to move to La Liga this summer following Real Madrid’s signing of Takefusa Kubo.