Today is 1 June and the third instalment of the Marquinhos series is about to get underway. Barcelona have been after the versatile Brazilian international defender for several years now.
Marquinhos still the target for Barça
When Marquinhos was still at Roma, the team at Barcelona, led by Antoni Zubizarreta, cast their net, but failed to catch their prey. Now, with Robert Fernández in charge, Barcelona are still after their man, but they are more than aware of both the high economic cost of the operation, and how complicated it’s likely to be.
Not a simple affair
At Barcelona they like the Maquinhos’ style and think he would slot straight into a Luis Enrique starting line-up. The problem? His current team: PSG. They bought him for 32 million euros back in 2013 and aren’t keen to sell. In fact, they’ll do what they can to kibosh the deal.
And what makes the deal harder for Barça is that they know they have to be completely transparent and as gently as possible over the deal. They want to avoid at all costs, any conflict with the owners of PSG, the Government of Qatar, with whom they are still involved in delicate negotiations over sponsorship - even it it’s only for one season.
Marquinhos himself is in the USA, with the Brazilian national side, ready for the Copa America. He’s waiting for news from both sides. Mostly from the PSG camp, where speculation is rife that there’ll be a change of coach. Laurent Blanc remains in charge for now, but many see imminent change. If there is a change, and who is brought in, will be key.
But whatever changes happen at PSG, it looks like the latest Marquinhos instalment will be a drawn out affair. Barcelona and their fans need to be patient, as they already have been for years.
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