The three players Barça could offer in exchange for Ruben Neves

The three players Barça could offer in exchange for Ruben Neves

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Barcelona could bring down the €50m fee by including players as makeweights

Barcelona want to sign a defensive midfielder to double Sergio Busquets' position next season. Xavi Hernandez has made it clear he wants two players for every role. The club are looking at several options, including Zubimendi (Real Sociedad), Tchouaméni (Mónaco) and Rubén Neves (Wolverhamtpon).

All three are liked. Tchouaméni is expected to move to Real Madrid, though, and the easiest operation would be for Neves, because of the good relationship with Wolves and the player's agent, Jorge Mendes. Wolves want any sale to be a club record deal but are open to negotiating the inclusion of players. There are profiles that fit. The 'Birmingham Mail' speak of Oscar Mingueza, Riqui Puig and Nico Gonzalez as possible makeweights.

Barça know Neves would like to make the move to Camp Nou. Arsenal, Newcastle and Manchester United are also keen on a player Wolves want close to €50 million for. Barça will not pay that much, but would include players. The Premier League side, advised by Mendes, have done several deals with Barça recently, with Semedo and Trincao moving to the midlands and Adama Traore in the other direction.

It seems unlikely Trincao will remain at Wolves beyond his loan this season. But they are open to other players. They want to strengthen in defence and midfield, so Mingueza, Riqui and Nico make sense. The first two are almost certain to leave this summer, while Nico, who is also represented by Mendes, could leave depending on the circumstances. Xavi is happy with him but also needs to add experience to the squad.