Barcelona Transfer News: Latest Rumours on Nelson Semedo and Andre Gomes

Christopher SimpsonFeatured ColumnistJune 17, 2017

LISBON, PORTUGAL - MAY 13: Benfica's defender Nelson Semedo from Portugal (L) vies with Vitoria Guimaraes forward Moussa Marega from Mali (R) during the match between SL Benfica and Vitoria SC for the Portuguese Primeira Liga at Estadio da Luz on May 13, 2017 in Lisbon, Portugal.  (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images)
Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images

Barcelona have reportedly held talks with Benfica regarding right-back Nelson Semedo, but what they're willing to pay for him falls well short of the Portuguese club's valuation.

According to Portuguese outlet A Bola (h/t Sport), the two clubs have discussed a move for Semedo—who has a €60 million release clause—and even though Benfica want €10 million less than that, it is still "a figure Barca wouldn't even think about paying."

Likewise, the Catalan giants would not agree to part with youngsters Jordi Mboula and Marc Cucurella as part of any deal.

Right-back is a key area in need of strengthening at the Camp Nou this summer with Barca yet to adequately replace Dani Alves.

Jan Hagen of Sport Witness hailed Semedo's campaign last year and relayed quotes from the 23-year-old's former mentor Helder Cristovao, who believes the player would be a natural fit at Barcelona:

He also praised Semedo's delivery and believes he is more incisive in the final third than Antonio Valencia of Manchester United:

The Portugal international's numbers from last season would support that positive assessment, as he contributed 12 assists in all competitions as well as scoring twice.

Semedo has pace to burn, and he's also a robust ball-winner when he's not making marauding runs forward. Per WhoScored.com, he averaged 2.9 tackles and 1.5 interceptions per game across the Primeira Liga and the UEFA Champions League last term.

He'd make for a strong signing, but unless at least one of the parties is prepared to move on his valuation, it seems he won't be moving to Barcelona this summer.

MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 27: Andre Filipe Tavares Gomes of FC Barcelona during the Copa Del Rey Final between FC Barcelona and Deportivo Alaves at Vicente Calderon Stadium on May 27, 2017 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Power Sport Images/Getty Images)
Power Sport Images/Getty Images

Meanwhile, according to AS' Moises Llorens (h/t Goal), Manchester United and Juventus are monitoring Andre Gomes but would need to be prepared to pay €35 million (£30.6 million)—the same figure Barcelona gave to Valencia last year for his signature.

The Portuguese midfielder struggled to fit in at the Camp Nou last term and endured a disappointing first campaign at the club.

Football journalist Rafael Hernandez believed former manager Luis Enrique was partly responsible for moving him around the midfield:

According to Squawka, Gomes created fewer chances per 90 minutes in La Liga last season than he did in his final campaign with Los Che, and he completed significantly fewer take-ons.

While he did win substantially more tackles per 90 than on the previous year and upped his passing accuracy from 81 per cent to 88 per cent, he was well below the standard of play that prompted Barca to buy him in the first place.

Hernandez believes he may yet turn things around at the club, though:

Indeed, he proved himself to be an excellent player at the Mestalla Stadium, and if he can recapture that form, he'd be a strong asset for Barca in the middle.

What's more, he still has considerable potential, hence attracting attention from the likes of Juve and United despite a poor year.

Barca would be wise to stick with him a bit longer to see if he can hit the heights he's capable of at the club before allowing him to potentially do the same for a rival.