Rodri: Barça eye Villarreal midfielder as Busquets' heir
The 21-year-old midfielder has excelled for The Yellow Submarine and the Spain Under-21s. He has a buy-out clause of €20 million in his contract.
Rodrigo Hernández is one of Barcelona’s key targets for the summer transfer window. The central midfielder has excelled this season – starting all 15 of Villarreal’s matches in LaLiga – and has provoked interest from several clubs.
Rodri available for €20m
The 21-year-old recently renewed his contract at la Cerámica until 2022 (it was due to expire in 2018), but his buy-out clause only increased by €8 million, rising from €12m to €20m.
Barça would be willing to part with that amount in order to acquire one of the most promising young midfielders in Spanish football.
Barcelona see Rodri as a perfect long-term replacement for Sergio Busquets, who will turn 30 in July. The club believe Rodri would grow under the tutelage of Busquets, and would also allow for greater rotation in that position. He would have the perfect teacher alongside him in the dressing room. The youngster already displays aspects of Busquets’ game, with his tactical intelligence and calmness in possession.
Atlético Madrid could compete
Rodri has attracted interest from other clubs. Atlético Madrid are also admirers, although Los Colchoneros have a clear disadvantage in the race for his signature: they rejected him as a teenager because they deemed him too small. He now stands at 1.91 metres.