Barcelona are ready to join the race to secure the services of coveted Atletico Madrid star Arda Turan even though his agent recently revealed the Turkey international is likely to move to the Premier League, Mundo Deportivo reports.
The future of the 28-year-old versatile midfielder has been under increasing scrutiny in recent days after his agent, Ahmet Bulut, told AS he wants to leave the Vicente Calderon to play in the Premier League, with him having been in discussions with three major clubs from England.
"He is planning on leaving Spain this summer. He would like to play in the Premier League, this is the path he would like to see his career take," he said.
"His departure from Atletico won't be easy due to his €41m buyout clause. I'm in discussion with three clubs but I can't reveal their names, they are three of the best clubs in England and indeed in Europe," he said.
Bulut added that AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain are also interested in securing his services but ruled out a move to the Serie A giants as they will not be in the Champions League next season.
La Gazzetta Dello Sport later reported that Manchester United are one of the "three" Premier League clubs interested and Louis van Gaal's side are preparing a bid in accordance with his release clause of around €41m (£29.2m, $45.8m) to secure his services.
AS, however, claimed the player would rather a move to Chelsea instead to reunite with his former Atletico Madrid friends Diego Costa and Thibaut Courtois – while suggesting the Blues could used the La Liga club's interest in the return of Filipe Luis to beat other suitors for his services.
But Mundo Deportivo now claims Barcelona are ready to battle with the Premier League giants to sign the Turkey international.
The Catalans are unable to sign any players during the summer transfer window due to a Fifa ban but could secure his services now and add him to the squad in January – as they have already done with Aleix Vidal, after signing him from Sevilla.
Mundo Deportivo claims Turan is the ace up the sleeve of Josep Maria Bartomeu to win Barcelona's elections.
The Catalan-based newspaper also added his €41m release clause will not be a problem as considering how the market is now, Barcelona believe he could be a bargain for that price.
Even though Turan's agent recently said the player was interested in English football, he may be tempted to join the Champions League winners instead – and snub the Premier League clubs interested in his services.