Barcelona are in need of defensive cover. Carlos Puyol is nearing the end of his career and if he gets injured again, the Catalan team will be in trouble. At the top of their wish list is Spanish international Javi Martinez, but the Spanish press think that the deal is dead in the water and he is now out of the betting on www.OddsWinner.com to join the Spanish giants.
The bad news is that Thomas Vermaelen is next on the list, according to The Mirror. Arsenal’s centre back and vice-captain is very highly regarded by Barcelona, and his ability to play at left back would give them much needed cover in this position as well.
The good news is that Vermaelen is happy at Arsenal, is very good friends with Arsenal captain Robin van Persie, and signed a new four year contract last summer. Barcelona have been put off Martinez by Bilbao’s 40 million euro valuation and are now looking to the English league.
The Spanish club have also been linked with a move for Chelsea’s David Luiz and Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany.
Vermaelen’s partner in defence at Arsenal, Laurent Koscielny will finally get his chance at Euro 2012, as Philip Mexes received his second yellow card for France. Koscielny will get a baptism of fire as France face World and European champions Spain on Saturday night.