Chelsea have reportedly made initial contact with Barcelona in an attempt to lure Ilaix Moriba away from the Spanish club.
According to Sport, both the Blues and Manchester City have already tested the waters regarding Moriba’s situation.
The 18-year-old has apparently been excluded from Ronald Koeman’s first-team pre-season training until he signs a new Barca contract.
He is presently camped up with the B-side and Sport suggested he could be demoted further if the issue is not resolved.
This is quite a fall from grace for the youthful gem, who has just experienced a whirlwind past couple of months.
Moriba made his senior debut in January and would go on to make another 17 appearances under Koeman’s gaze.
His first and only goal so far arrived against Osasuna in March.
“Ilaix is young, but is physically very strong,” said Barca’s boss after the match.
“He’s gaining ground to be with the first team more often.”
After such a sudden breakthrough moment, it seems the midfielder is back to square one unless he agrees to an extension.
There is already an £86m (Daily Mail) release clause waiting in his current deal, which runs out next June.
Permitted Moriba pens a fresh agreement, that impressive figure could increase further.
Chelsea can’t really be blamed for approaching Barca about potentially stealing their sensational youngster.
Any player who models themselves on Sergio Busquets is certainly one to look out for.
“I watch videos of Sergio Busquets, Yaya Toure and Roman Riquelme, they all play in midfield and they all played here at Barcelona,” Moriba told DUGOUT earlier this year.
I swear Chelsea’s eyes light up whenever an emerging talent comes even slightly on the market.
I’ll keep it plain and simple: we do not need Moriba.
Despite the sudden exodus of prodigies leaving the academy, there are plenty more teenagers in reserve to come through and flourish.
Adding another one, an expensive one and that, is just unnecessary.