Barcelona will have a void to fill moving forward after Andres Iniesta bid an emotional farewell to the club at the end of last season.
From his tear-jerking press conference to his long goodbye to the Nou Camp after his final home game for the Catalan giants, over the summer it will become more apparent that Ernesto Valverde needs to replace the club icon in his squad either with an in-house solution or perhaps a new signing.
Having landed a domestic double in his first year in charge at Barcelona, he’ll want to build on that success and make the necessary adjustments to ensure his side stay at the top.
In order to do that, they’ve reportedly been linked with Juventus playmaker Miralem Pjanic, but as also noted by Sport, the Serie A champions are said to want €80m for the Bosnian international.
The 28-year-old has firmly established himself as a fundamental figure for Massimiliano Allegri’s side since joining from Roma in 2016, as he contributed 14 assists and seven goals in 44 appearances last season.
He’s played a pivotal role in winning back-to-back Serie A titles and Coppa Italia trophies since he arrived, and given his technical quality, vision, passing range and creativity, it’s easy to see why he would fit in so well at Barcelona and why they would reportedly want him.
That’s a view said to be shared by Lionel Messi, with The Express, via Don Balon, noting that the Argentine forward wants Pjanic as a replacement for Iniesta.
With that touted price-tag in mind, it remains to be seen whether or not a deal could be done, but it may secure a successful balance in the Barcelona line-up.
Pjanic could arguably slot in to replace Iniesta, allowing Philippe Coutinho to move further up the pitch to partner Messi and Luis Suarez in an attacking trident.
Time will tell if Valverde sees that as an ideal solution and if Barcelona are willing to stump up such a hefty reported fee.