Barcelona are interested in signing Celtic’s Josip Juranovic in January, with one source telling Sky Sports News he is their number one target to fill the right-back position.
Two Premier League clubs and Barca’s La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid are also looking at the Croatia international.
Celtic have wanted to keep Juranovic in Glasgow and held talks over an improved new contract. However, neither party could reach an agreement before he departed for the World Cup in Qatar.
The 27-year-old still has more than three-and-a-half years left on his current deal and it’s understood Celtic will look to sit down with Juranovic again when he returns from his post-World Cup break next week, but the Scottish champions are braced for bids amid interest from the Premier League and clubs in Europe.
Juranovic was given a week off following Croatia’s World Cup campaign and will be assessed for the injury, which kept him out of the third-place play-off win over Morocco on Saturday.
Celtic have already announced the signing of Canada right-back Alistair Johnston on a five-year deal.
The Hoops paid an initial fee of £3.5m for the CF Montreal defender, who will officially join the club in January.
‘It is great he is getting noticed’
Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou also has Anthony Ralston to call upon at right-back, so when asked if the club would consider selling Juranovic, he said: “We want clubs looking at our players, we want people talking about our football club and I think they are all positive things.
“It is great he is getting noticed. I want our players getting noticed. If they weren’t getting noticed they wouldn’t be doing well.
“I don’t even think about it. At the end of the day, I hope all of our players are getting the attention because it means we have good players here.
“From my perspective, I think all our boys did really well at the World Cup and that’s a reflection of how they are developing as footballers at our football club.
“I think that is the most important thing. I’m sure a lot of our players are getting attention and will continue to get attention and that’s what we want.”
Can Barcelona sign Juranovic?
Barcelona president Joan Laporta said last month that the club will still find it difficult to make January signings despite improving the health of their finances.
“We had to make some levers, which were economic operations that saved the club from ruin, and now the club is in economic recovery,” he said.
“But despite that, according to the rules of financial fair play of the Spanish league, we cannot sign.
“Us and some other La Liga clubs are also trying to convince La Liga to be more flexible, and allow us other types of interpretations that can make Barcelona even stronger.”
Keep up-to-date with all the latest transfer news and rumours in our dedicated Transfer Centre blog on Sky Sports’ digital platforms. You can also catch up with the ins, outs and analysis on Sky Sports News.
Follow Celtic with Sky Sports
Follow every Celtic game in the Scottish Premiership this season with our live blogs on the Sky Sports website and app, and watch match highlights for free.
Want the Celtic latest? Bookmark our Celtic news page, check out Celtic’s fixtures and Celtic’s latest results, watch Celtic’s goals and video, keep track of the Scottish Premiership table and see which Celtic games are coming up live on Sky Sports.
Get all this and more – including notifications sent straight to your phone – by downloading the Sky Sports app and setting Celtic as your favourite team.