Barcelona seem favourites to sign Schalke 04 midfilder Leon Goretzka, and the only decision left is whether to sign him in January or wait till the summer.
Neymar Jr. walked away to join direct Champions League rivals Paris Saint-Germain last summer, a move that sent shivers down the spine of Barca.
Barcelona responded by flying Paulinho in from China and then made a young, unproven Ousmane Dembele the second-most expensive player on the planet
According to Mundo Deportivo Barcelona have already agreed a deal with rising German superstar, Leon Goretzka, valued at around €47 million by his club Schalke 04.
Leon Goretzka is on the final year of his contract, and even if the German club were to reject any offers from Barca, Goretzka – who is refusing to sign a new deal at the club – will be available on a free transfer come the summer window.
A host of clubs are behind the impressive German midfielder, capable of playing anywhere across the middle.
Mundo Deportivo report that Goretzka has made up his mind, after talking with German teammate and Barcelona’s first-choice goalkeeper Marc Ander Ter Stegen.
Jörg Neubauer, Goretzka’s manager, is said to have conducted multiple rounds of negotiations with Barca already regarding the player’s contract details.
Schalke are reluctant to let him leave in january – they believe his presence in the team will ensure a top 4 finish, and Champions League participation, and that for them is more valuable than the €47 million that Barca would plump for him in January.