FC Barcelona have been looking to increase their midfield depth this summer in a number of ways. They were looking at Marco Verratti, but later turned their heads to Paulinho, a Brazil international playing for Guangzhou Evergrande in the Chinese Super League.
Their initial attempts to land the former Tottenham player were not successful, but things are about to change in the coming hours. Several European newspapers have indicated that Guangzhou have accepted Barca’s offer, so Paulinho will head to Camp Nou for a reported fee close to €40 million.
Sources from FC Barcelona have indicated the deal is not completed yet, but that should change during the course of the weekend.
When finalised, Paulinho will become Barca’s third signing of the summer after the arrivals of Nelson Semedo and Gerard Deulofeu, and will also be the most expensive one. But there is no question the team needed someone like him. Paulinho can contribute on both sides of the ball, and will be a more versatile alternative to defensive-minded players such as Sergio Busquets and Sergi Roberto.
Adding the Brazilian international should improve Los Blaugranas’ squad on both ends of the pitch. He is not a sexy signing by any means, but is a player Barcelona desperately needed. Especially after the negotiations for players such as Philippe Coutinho, Ousmane Dembele and Inigo Martinez were not completed during the course of the present week.