La Liga champions Barcelona are considering a move for İlkay Gündoğan this summer, as they search for a long-term replacement to departing legend Andrés Iniesta.
The Manchester City midfielder had a largely injury-free spell at the Etihad last season as Pep Guardiola’s side went on to lift the Premier League title, making 49 appearances across all competitions for the Citizens.
A report from the Sun claims that Gündoğan’s performances last season caught the attention of Barcelona and that the Catalan side are keen to lure the Germany international away from Manchester this summer.
The 27-year-old only moved to Manchester City in 2016 following the arrival of Guardiola, costing the club €27m in a transfer which was largely seen as a risk due to Gündoğan’s constant struggle with injury at Borussia Dortmund.
But Gündoğan has taken his game to a new level at City, with Barcelona now lining up the midfielder as they look to bolster their squad following Iniesta’s departure to Japan.
The 34-year-old’s exit could have paved the way for either Denis Suárez or André Gomes to have a more regular spot in the club’s first team, while youth players Sergi Samper and Carles Aleñá had also been tipped for a promotion ahead of the new season.
But it appears that Barcelona would rather sign a ready-made replacement for Iniesta this summer, while continuing to offer their fringe players a chance to impress in other domestic competitions.
Gündoğan has made 64 appearances at Manchester City following his arrival two years ago, scoring 11 goals and claiming nine assists. The Germany international is likely to be offered a new contract by City this summer, although it is claimed an offer over £50m could convince the club to cash in.