La Liga giants FC Barcelona have identified Girona’s Cristhian Stuani as the backup option to star striker Luis Suarez, according to Spanish news agency Don Balon.
Over the past couple of months, the Spanish League champions have been looking for a backup to Suarez who is currently 32 years old and showing slight signs of a decline in form. Suarez’ struggles were seen most prominently during their recent Champions League semi-final match against Liverpool, when Barcelona got eliminated without scoring a single away goal.
The Uruguayan has not had adequate rest this season, having played in 49 matches across competitions for the Blaugranas. Had it not been for his recent knee injury, he would have played in the Copa del Rey finals as well, as he is considered one of the most important members in the team.
Barcelona’s options for the backup striker role included Eintracht Frankfurt’s Luka Jovic. However, the Serbian was interested in becoming the team’s first choice striker and was also very expensive, at €70million. Meanwhile, captain Lionel Messi is more interested in retaining Suarez as the main striker, and so he wants the new signing to accept being a substitute without question.
As a result, Don Balon reports that the Blaugranas will now consider Stuani, who is very cheap at just €7million, and is also ready to play as a substitute.
Stuani had a good season with Girona, scoring 18 times in 32 league appearances this season.
FOX Sports Asia probability ratings: 3/5; Barcelona can easily sign Stuani as a backup option in attack as he is cheap. However, his age seems a bit of an issue at 32. It has already been understood that the Spanish giants are keen to sign young strikers and so they may also prefer someone else for the role.