Quique Setien claimed to be neither optimistic or pessimistic about Barcelona signing Lautaro Martinez.
Reports have constantly linked the Inter Milan forward with Barcelona ever since the 2019/20 season began.
His good run of form under Antonio Conte has only helped further those transfer links but Barca’s interests are very real, it seems. Setien has been keen on adding a striker ever since he took charge at Camp Nou. Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele’s injury had left Barca in a precarious spot early on in the year.
After failing to sign anybody in January, the Catalan giants had to make an emergency addition of Martin Braithwaite from Leganes. He is still viewed as a temporary piece while a future prospect in Francisco Trincao is set to arrive in July from SC Braga.
Nevertheless, Luis Suarez turned 33 this year and he is quite visibly slowing down in terms of performance. The Uruguayan is open to the idea of someone replacing him and Setien has picked Martinez to be that person. When asked about Barca’s chances of signing the 22-year-old, Setien said, “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.”
Setien is supportive of the season being completed but he realizes how difficult it could be with the death toll reaching 164,000 worldwide. “We all want the championship to end even if it is behind closed doors,” he said. “But I would like to be guaranteed that there would be no problem.”
Setien added, “I see it difficult to resume the championship. Until some light is seen, I prefer to stay at home.”