Girona full-back Arnau Martinez rose to the occasion in the 4-2 win over Real Madrid in La Liga last night.
While Valentine Castellanos grabbed the headlines for scoring all of Girona’s four goals, Martinez was also equally pivotal in the emphatic win.
The 20-year-old has emerged as one of the best young talents in La Liga this season, producing some eye-catching displays.
The performance against Madrid further demonstrated his high ceiling, with Martinez nearly flawless in every action he took.
The Spanish right-back successfully kept Vinicius Junior in check and proved a threat in both attack and defensive phases.
In addition to setting up Castellanos’ second goal with a brilliant cross, Martinez was robust in defence, completing the most tackles in the game.
Martinez’s stellar season has caught the attention of Barcelona, whose academy La Masia is where he spent his youth ranks.
The Blaugrana have identified right-back as the position that needs to be reinforced in the summer, adding Martinez’s name to their wishlist.
If last night’s showing against Carlo Ancelotti’s side was not enough, Martinez reminded Barcelona of his potential with a scintillating performance weeks ago in the Catalan derby at Camp Nou.
However, there is a stumbling block that fellow rivals Atletico Madrid are leading the race for Martinez, who would cost only around €20 million.
The price is a bargain, given that Martinez is the full-back with the most goal contributions in La Liga.
Barca have lost some of the best homegrown talents in the past but have always made up for it with their top-quality production line.
However, failing to bring back Martinez could be a mistake due to his rich vein of form and affordable transfer fee.
Barca have also shortlisted Juan Foyth and Joao Cancelo as right-back targets, but there are doubts over their transfers because of the club’s financial troubles.
- PSG owner Nasser Al-Khelaifi rubbishes involvement in Man Utd takeover talks
- Cristiano Ronaldo’s Al-Nassr pushing to sign Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri
- Al-Ittihad intensifying efforts to sign Joao Moutinho
- Brahim Diaz pens new contract at Real Madrid until 2027
- Arsenal agree fresh contract terms with William Saliba