Barcelona Barge in Race to Sign Athletic Bilbao Defender Aymeric Laporte
La Liga giants Barcelona are thought to be interested in signing Athletic Bilbao’s promising young defender Aymeric Laporte, according to Spanish daily Sport.
The Camp Nou outfit were recently handed a stiff ban on transfers due to breaching rules on signing under-age players but have seen this penalty halted after they filed an appeal before the footballing tribunal.
With the ability to buy and sell players once again a possibility for Barcelona, the Blaugrana have wasted no time seeking out players to reinforce their squad, especially in the defense department – with iconic centre-back and team captain Carles Puyol set to leave the club at the end of the season.
Enter Laporte, Bilbao’s enigmatic young centre-back, who’s already taken key defensive duties for his club at the age of 19, having already made 32 league appearances this term.
Bundesliga side Bayern Munich are understood to be keen on snapping up the young defender from France, but now it appears Barca are set to pip the German giants for Laporte’s signature.
True enough, Barcelona have already sounded their willingness to meet Laporte’s valuation of €30m. Whether Bilbao will bite on the bait, however, remains to be seen.
Laporte’s contract with Bilbao is set to expire in 2018.