Barcelona are stepping up their interest in Chelsea captain César Azpilicueta.
The Spanish international is out of contract at Stamford Bridge at the end of the season, but has made enough appearances this season to trigger an automatic one year contract extension.
However, he stills wants to leave because of the continued financial uncertainty around the club.
He is now also 32, and is looking for a longer-term deal which will offer more security to him and his family than that on offer at Stamford Bridge, where there isa policy of only offering short-term contracts to players over 30 years old.
The Catalans have already signed Azpilicueta’s current team mate Andreas Christensen on a free transfer, and are now hoping they can negotiate a similar deal with the full-back.
The embargo that Chelsea are under prevents them from negotiating with current players over contract renewals, and the longer the situation continues, the more vulnerable they are to other clubs making approaches for their best players.
Andy is an exiled English football fan living in Cyprus. He loves all sports but football is his abiding passion, and he still has dreams every now and then about scoring the winning goal in a Wembley Cup Final, even though his playing days are long gone. He follows most major leagues, across Europe at least, and has a favoured team in each. When he’s not watching, listening, reading or downloading podcasts about football, he spend his time worrying about his beloved Arsenal.