Barcelona are ‘monitoring’ Morocco star Azzedine Ounahi ahead of the January window following his impressive displays at the World Cup – with the LaLiga giants looking at ‘low-cost’ midfielders due to financial restrictions
Barcelona are monitoring Morocco and Angers midfielder Azzedine Ounahi, according to reports in Spain.
The North African side have been the surprise package of this year’s tournament, becoming the first African side to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup.
Ounahi has been a revelation and a shining spark for Morocco in midfield, with impressive performances against Spain and Portugal in the knockouts.
Morocco midfielder Azzedine Ounahi has been a revelation at the World Cup this winter
According to Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona are monitoring Ounahi with a view to making a move for him in the January transfer window.
As the Catalan club’s financial woes continue, they are now seeking “low-cost profiles” in a bid to bolster their midfield.
Ounahi currently plays for Angers, who currently sit bottom of Ligue 1 and is believed to be worth £4m, although that is now expected to be higher following his World Cup displays.
The 22-year-old shone for the French side last season and earned his first cap at the Africa Cup of Nations earlier this year.
Barcelona are reportedly interested in signing Ounahi from Angers in the January window
As reported by Sky Sports, a number of Spanish sides, including Sevilla, were interested in Ounahi this summer before he opted to sign a new four-year deal with Angers.
Luis Enrique, Spain’s manager at this year’s World Cup, paid tribute to the youngster after his team’s loss to Morocco.
“Madre mía, where did this kid come from? He can really play. He surprised me. He didn’t stop running. He must be exhausted, Enrique said.
Morocco will be looking to make more history and book a place in the final when they face France on Wednesday night.
Morocco will seek to make more history and book a place in the World Cup final on Wednesday
After the win over Portugal, manager Walid Regragui said: “What is important for future generations is that we have shown that it is possible for an African team to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup. Or even the final, why not?
“In a press conference three or four games ago I was asked if we could win the World Cup. And I said, ‘Why not?’ We can dream. Why shouldn’t we dream? If you don’t dream, you won’t get anywhere. It costs you nothing.
“European countries are used to winning the World Cup, so we have to try to get in there, and go beyond ourselves.”