Paris Saint-Germain are ready to pay €100m (£77.2m, $111.2m) to make Barcelona star Sergio Busquets their marquee signing of the summer, according to Mundo Deportivo. The Catalan publication claims that the Ligue 1 side have earmarked the Spaniard as their top priority to bolster the midfield, but they could face stiff competition from the Premier League with both Chelsea and Manchester City monitoring the situation.
Busquets, 27, has garnered a reputation as one of the best holding midfielders around ever since Pep Guardiola promoted him to the Barca first team in 2008, playing a crucial role in both the recent golden eras of the La Liga Giants and the Spanish national team. His importance to the Catalan outfit has become increased in recent seasons following the departure of Xavi Hernandez, with him now being seen as one of the dressing room's true leaders.
Mundo Deportivo claims that PSG have this identified him as their number one target – ahead of Paul Pogba – with Thiago Motta already 33 and Marco Veratti having an uncertain future at the club.
The publication reports that the Ligue 1 leaders already made an attempt to secure Busquets' services last summer, but the Spaniard opted to sign a new deal with Barcelona committing his future to 2019.
But PSG have not given up in their intentions, and apparently recently contacted Busquets' agent to discuss the chances of recruiting him in the summer, with a figure of €100m mooted to lure him away from the Nou Camp.
Mundo Deportivo says Chelsea are monitoring his situation, while Manchester City are also a potential candidate with the appointment of Guardiola.
Guardiola is not likely to steal any players from his former side but Mundo Deportivo claims that should Busquets himself decide he wants to leave Barcelona the manager will not hesitate in trying to secure an Etihad Stadium reunion.
Barcelona are reportedly ready to reward Busquets with yet another new deal, despite him having received a pay rise recently. The problem, as with the Neymar case, is that the La Liga giants are unable to make any financial deals until the new financial year due to the club's debt statutes.
Last season, Busquets admitted he would like to experience Premier League football before finally hanging up his boots.
"Everyone talks highly of England and I'd like to experience it one day. You see more space, more opportunity to enjoy your football. It's more physical, more intense, but I think I'd be comfortable," he said to The Guardian.