Barcelona chasing Newcastle striker is bonkers rumour of the day

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Perhaps it’s the fact that there’s not much to talk about now that Leicester have wrapped up the greatest story of the season. But Barcelona’s latest rumoured transfer target feels like a longer shot than even the Foxes’ spellbinding Premier League success was.

According to the Daily Mirror, the Catalan club have identified Newcastle striker Ayoze Perez as a potential summer target.

The paper wants us to belief that the Blaugrana will buy the 22-year-old as an understudy to addicted goalscoring trio Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar, despite the fact that the club’s revered La Masia academy could probably produce such a player for free.

In fact, the youth team has fed Luis Enrique with two such options already this season, as Munir El Haddadi and Sandro Ramirez have both filled in for the first-choice forward line when required.

Between them that duo have contributed three goals in a little over 1000 minutes of La Liga game time, while Perez has scored six times for the Magpies in over 2000 minutes on a Premier League pitch.

According to the Mirror, both youngsters have grown tired of playing second fiddle to MSN and will leave the Nou Camp this summer. But if that’s true, then why would Perez, in his right mind, replace either of them considering he’s two years their elder?

Whether El Haddadi or Sandro leave, it certainly seems strange that Barca would pay for Perez. He’s contracted to the Geordies until the summer of 2021 and is currently valued by transfermarkt.com at £6m.

Granted, playing the occasional dead rubber for Barcelona is a more attractive proposition than spending an entire campaign in the Championship, which remains a possibility for Newcastle. But that works on the idea that the Spanish giants are even interested in Perez in the first place.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.