Barca have been hailed for their transfer ambition of having enough attackers in their squad and they moved to achieve that goal by signing a couple of forwards in the January winter transfer window to that effect. However, in order to establish a balance in the squad, they would also have to sign defenders, an area where they are currently lagging behind. With Gerard Pique rapidly approaching the end of his career, and Eric Garcia also not yet reaching the expected heights, there is a need for Xavi to bring in at least one solid defender in the summer.
Both Samuel Umtiti and Clement Lenglet are expected to be offloaded as well, further alleviating the need for a new defender to maintain depth in the defensive department. Various names ranging from Matthijs de Ligt to Jules Kounde have been linked with a move to Barça in recent weeks. However, according to the latest report from Fichajes, manager Xavi Hernandez has asked the club to secure the services of AFC Ajax centre-half Lisandro Martinez.
Formerly of Newell’s Old Boys, the defender spent time at Defensa y Justicia before arriving at Ajax in the summer of 2019. He has since grown into a pivotal part of the setup for the Dutch giants, racking up 113 appearances for the club.
The 24-year-old has also established a foothold in the Argentine national team. Barcelona have been linked with a move for him in the past and, as per the report, Xavi wants him as part of his roster for the upcoming season.
It is claimed that the Barça head coach values Martinez’s versatility as he can play at left-back and defensive midfield as well, apart from his primary position at centre-back. His being left-footed would also be an advantage in case both Umtiti and Lenglet end up leaving.
Furthermore, the six-time capped Argentine international is seen as a cheaper alternative, with his market value standing €32 million. Ajax and Barcelona have a good working relationship and it will be interesting to see if the Catalans end up signing another of their players this summer