Barcelona are gearing themselves up for a grand summer transfer window as Joan Laporta & co. look to equip manager Xavi Hernandez with the best possible squad for him to take the team back to the top.
The board backed Xavi in January, bringing in Ferran Torres, Adama Traore and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who have played a key role in the Catalans’ revival during the second half of the season.
Despite bolstering the frontline, Barcelona are expected to push for two more attacking signings in the summer.
A marquee centre-forward remains at the top of the agenda club’s. Erling Haaland has been the priority target, but the Borussia Dortmund ace seems out of reach.
Robert Lewandowski, on the other hand, has emerged as a more achievable target for the Blaugrana. The 33-year-old is entering the last year of his contract at Bayern Munich and is open to joining Barça, with positive talks already held with his camp.
Apart from the Poland striker, a new right-winger could also be brought in, with talks to sign Leeds United superstar Raphinha underway. The Brazilian would strengthen the attack in the eventuality that Ousmane Dembele leaves or Traore is not signed permanently.
We now take a look at how the Barcelona frontline might shape up if the club end up signing both Lewandowski and Raphinha come summer.
Raphinha has been a revelation at Leeds since arriving from Rennes last year. The Brazilian has pace in abundance and backs it up with natural flair, ball control and the ability to score and create goals.
He has ten goals and three assists in 29 league outings this term for a Leeds side that has spent the majority of the season towards the bottom end of the table. All signs point towards him thriving in Xavi’s system, should the 25-year-old move to Camp Nou.
Raphinha would likely juggle the right-wing spot with Ousmane Dembele, provided the Frenchman stays. There are hopes that he might sign an extension. Considering how he has been playing of late, he would again be a key player if he pens a new deal.
Aubameyang has been a huge plus for Barcelona since signing in January after Arsenal terminated his contract. The 32-year-old has netted nine goals in 13 games for the Catalans, showing that he still has plenty left to offer.
But, should Lewandowski end up joining, the Poland captain will be the undisputed first-choice centre-forward. The veteran striker continues to score goals for fun despite turning 33 years old and has banged in 46 goals this season from just 40 matches.
Undoubtedly one of the best strikers in the game currently, Lewandowski’s presence on the pitch will guarantee a boatload of goals for Barcelona.
The left-wing slot will then be contested between Barcelona prodigy Ansu Fati and January signing Ferran Torres. Fati has had an injury-riddled 18-month period, spending more time on the treatment tables than on the pitch.
When he did step on the field on a few occasions early in the season, the 19-year-old was Barça’s best player, netting five goals and assisting one more in ten games. He is close to returning from his spell on the sidelines and fans will be waiting to see how he establishes himself in Xavi’s team.
Ferran Torres’ sometimes-scratchy finishing aside, he has been a fine addition at Camp Nou. The ingenuity in his movement in the final third truly sets him apart at Barça and will make him a key player in the future.