Barcelona transfer news: Rivals attempt to hijack €80m swoop, update on pursuit of Man Utd star

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Reports have linked Barcelona with some high-profile signings next year, but they may encounter some troubles with their primary target.

Ernesto Valverde has done an excellent job thus far after taking charge this past summer, leading his side to an unbeaten start to the La Liga campaign as they sit top of the table and four points clear of their nearest rivals.

Further, they also lead the way in their Champions League group, and so things are going pretty smoothly for the Catalan giants right now.

However, that hasn’t seemingly been enough to stop them from considering ways of further strengthening the squad, with Guillem Balague telling Sky Sports that he expects Barcelona to make an €80m bid for Liverpool playmaker Philippe Coutinho in January.

The problem is that they aren’t the only ones chasing the Brazilian international, as Sport claim that Paris Saint-Germain made contact with his representative on Monday night in London at FIFA’s ‘The Best’ awards, with a view of hijacking the bid and pushing their way to the front of the queue.

It remains to be seen if the French giants are successful, as with the likes of Neymar and Dani Alves already at the club, they could hold the upper hand in convincing Coutinho to join his compatriots in Paris.

Nevertheless, the appeal of turning out at the Nou Camp will surely be a big factor too, with the Liverpool man heavily linked with a move to Barcelona all summer long. With such a prominent role likely as Andres Iniesta edges ever closer to the end of his glittering playing career, a switch to Catalonia may be the more fruitful decision.

Meanwhile, Sport also claim that Manchester United midfielder Ander Herrera isn’t a target for Barca, despite speculation suggesting otherwise in recent weeks.

The Spaniard’s current contract at Old Trafford expires at the end of the season, albeit the club have a one-year option to extend and keep him on.

However, they won’t seemingly come under pressure to keep him as Barca have their sights set on Coutinho, despite the fact that Valverde knows Herrera well from their previous stint together at Athletic Bilbao and will know what he can offer his team.

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