Barcelona Transfer News: Shock Fernando Torres Rumours Emerge

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJanuary 24, 2016

MADRID, SPAIN - JANUARY 06: Fernando Torres of Club Atletico de Madrid looks on during the Copa del Rey, Round of 16 First Leg match, between Rayo Vallecano de Madrid and Club Atletico de Madrid at Estadio de Vallecas on January 6, 2016 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Barcelona could reportedly look to snap up Fernando Torres on a free transfer when his contract with AC Milan expires at the end of the season.

The former Liverpool striker is currently on loan at Atletico Madrid but will become a free agent following the 2015-16 campaign.

According to Spanish outlet AS (via Rob Burnett in the Mirror), Barca may "take a gamble" on Torres, although clubs from Japan, China, the UAE and USA have also expressed interest in the Spaniard.

It is a surprising link, and it seems quite unlikely that the European champions would look to add Torres to their squad.

They do need some further depth in the strike department, and the long-rumoured move for Nolito could be under threat with Celta Vigo holding firm on their €18 million (£13.6 million) valuation, per Bleacher Report's Dean Jones:

However, while Barcelona will be attracted by the fact that they could bring in Torres for free in the summer, he simply does not seem to be good enough anymore to be a worthy addition at the Camp Nou.

The 31-year-old has not scored in his last 18 appearances for Atleti, a run stretching back to September, per

While he was once one of the most lethal strikers in world football, Torres has struggled for form since the latter stages of his time at Liverpool.

His loan move back to boyhood club Atletico early in 2015 momentarily promised to revitalise him as he netted a brace against Real Madrid in a January Copa del Rey clash.

However, he is nowhere near the player he once was and would not necessarily represent even adequate back-up at Barca.

Luis Suarez is the undisputed No. 9 for the Catalan giants. Manager Luis Enrique does not have a like-for-like replacement for the Uruguayan in case of injury, and no doubt would welcome the addition of another striker.

Torres, though, is not the answer, especially as he is set to turn 32 in March. 

And Barca may not even get the option to sign him up as his agent has indicated Torres has already received a bumper offer from an unnamed club, per Squawka News:

The most likely outcome for Torres in the summer is that he will move away from Europe, perhaps to MLS, where former superstars like Andrea Pirlo, David Villa, Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard currently ply their trade.