Barcelona ‘very close’ to deal for Inter’s Lautaro Martinez – €60m plus two players

Barcelona are ‘very close’ to agreeing a deal with Inter to land star striker Lautaro Martinez, according to Tuesday’s front page of Diario Sport.

The report claims that the Blaugrana are willing to pay the Nerazzurri a fee of €60m upfront for the player alongside the transfer of two players, although no names are specified by the report.

A multitude of reports have linked the Catalan club to Argentine striker Martinez, who holds a €111m release clause at the Milanese giants.

Sky Sports said last month that Inter are hopeful of signing Barcelona duo Nelson Semedo and Carles Alena as part of any deal, following a similar report in Gazzetta dello Sport which claimed Inter will not budge on the €111m release clause of Martinez but may be willing to accept a player-exchange deal from Barcelona.

A report in Diario Sport from March spoke of the Blaugrana being willing to use Arturo Vidal as a makeweight in the deal for Martinez.

Vidal is said to have a transfer valuation of between €15m and €20m, while the Chilean midfielder has started just 13 matches across all competitions for the Blaugrana despite scoring in six different matches in La Liga to date, and is said to be keen to play more first team football.

A report in El Mundo Deportivo from February claimed that it was a ‘war’ between Barcelona and their El Clasico rivals Real Madrid for Martinez, who is said to be Barca’s primary transfer target.

It had been thought that Barcelona had led the way in the race for the 22-year-old, whom they had identified as the long-term successor to the ageing Luis Suarez.

The Argentine international has netted 16 goals 31 appearances for the Milanese giants this campaign and has particularly impressed in European competition, scoring five in six outings in the Champions League.

Martinez’s current deal runs to June 2023 and was signed in July 2018, when Inter paid Racing Club a reported €22.7m for his services and he has swiftly established himself as a star in Italy.

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