Barcelona are planning a £20m bid for Chelsea striker Fernando Torres. The Metro reports the Spanish champions have opened talks with the Europa League winners to bring the former Liverpool forward to the Camp Nou.
Tito Vilanova is reportedly planning a revamp of his first team before the new season and the Spain international could be a big part of a new-look attacking line, given the rumours linking compatriot David Villa with a summer exit. The Mirror has linked Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham with a move for the £12m forward.
Torres scored 22 goals in all competitions last season, his best return since an astronomical £50m transfer from Anfield. However, the Catalans are reportedly unwilling to spend more than their stated fee on the striker.
The Spaniards have already confirmed an undisclosed deal for Brazil forward Neymar and an attacking line of Lionel Messi, Torres and the Brazilian, supported by Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets in midfield, could help the club reclaim pride on the continent, after a humbling 7-0 aggregate Champions League defeat to Bundesliga winners Bayern Munich.
However, Barcelona will have competition from Serie A side Napoli, who have already moved to appoint last season's interim Chelsea manager Rafael Benitez as their coach and could provide the former Inter Milan manager a third re-union with Torres if Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani leaves Naples.
Will Torres be willing to move either Barcelona or Napoli? The Metro believes that while he is happy in west London, he would welcome a return to Spain. However, a move to Barcelona will mean he plays second fiddle to Messi, a role that Villa was given and was clearly uncomfortable with.
And with the 2014 FIFA World Cup fast approaching, a lack of game time for Torres could be a problem, particularly since the 29-year-old is finally approaching something like his best.
A move to Napoli could be more interesting. The Italians can offer him Champions League football and the chance to play under Benitez again; the ex-Liverpool boss is widely credited for helping the striker emerge from his shell at Stamford Bridge and a chance to continue that could be tempting.