Setien drops an update on the club’s interest in Martinez

Barcelona manager Quique Setien has said that he has no idea whether the club can push through a summer deal for Lautaro Martinez. The Argentine has been earmarked as the prime target to strengthen the club’s strikeforce during the summer but he won’t come on the cheap with the Nerazzurri sent to demand more than £100m for his sale.

Speaking to Onda Cero, Setien said that he is neither optimistic or pessimistic over a move for the marksman, considering the current financial impact due to the coronavirus pandemic, he told: "We talk about transfers, but this pandemic is going to condition many things. The situation of the clubs will be economically complicated. I am not pessimistic or optimistic with Lautaro. I like how I like great footballers, but I have no illusions with any."

Martinez has formed a superb partnership with Romelu Lukaku upfront this term and he has already netted 17 times across all competitions. The likes of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez have talked about him joining the Blaugrana in the future and the same was mentioned by Martinez’s representative earlier this month.

Despite this, the Nerazzurri have the final decision to make over the summer transfer and they are currently reluctant to accept any sum less than the £102m release clause. Of course, their stance could change in the coming months and reports claim that the Blaugrana may propose a part-exchange deal to reduce the valuation.

Arturo Vidal and Arthur have been earmarked as possible targets for the San Siro giants and the Spanish champions have the chance to significantly reduce the price tag for Martinez’s transfer. The former Racing club man has more than three years remaining on his existing contract with the Nerazzurri. He has been deemed to have already agreed personal terms with the Blaugrana.