BARCELONA

Barcelona settle on a striker: Cristhian Stuani

Girona's Uruguayan centre-forward is priced at 15 million euros and Valverde wants the club to sign him now. He has 12 goals in LaLiga, five less than Messi.

Barcelona settle on a striker: Cristhian Stuani
GORKA LEIZA DIARIO AS

Barcelona have decided on which striker they want to bring in to strengthen their attack following Munir El Haddadi's departure to Sevilla. The man who the blaugrana's technical department have settled on is Girona's Cristhian Stuani. The 32-year-old Uruguayan (who has an Italian passport) is mulling over an offer to renew with Girona. Meanwhile at Camp Nou, officials have been frantically searching for a striker who is familar with the Spanish top flight and who will be able to perform to the required level from Day One. Sources have told AS that Ernesto Valverde is interested in bringing in Stuani - the third top scorer in LaLiga with 12 goals, five fewer than Lionel Messi and two less than Luis Suárez, his fellow countryman and friend. 

Barça find themselves at the risk of being understaffed in attach and Eric Abidal and Ramon Planes hope to resolve the situation within the next two weeks. The team has entered a critical part of the campaign and there's no time to lose. Curiously, it was Planes who hired Stuani when he was Sports Director at Espanyol. The Uruguayan forward did well with the blanquiazules even though he ended up playing in a wider position in Cornellà, which is not his favoured role. 

Girona FC v Deportivo Alaves - La LigaCristhian Stuani scores against Alavés.

Price for Stuani

Stuani's release clause was set at 15 million euros and he is a highly-respected and well-loved player at Montilivi. Director of Sport Enric Cárcel has been trying to tie the player down to a new contract. Ernesto Valverde is also a fan of the Uruguayan's finishing skills and his experience. On an international level, Stuani has played in the last two World Cup finals with Uruguay as well as other major tournaments including the Copa América. If he takes up Barcelona's offer, he would also make his debut in the Champions League - a dream for any footballer.