Barcelona link pleases River Plate star

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River Plate starlet Eder Balanta admits it is flattering to be linked with a move to Barcelona, and is excited by the prospect of making history as the first Colombian to represent the Catalan club, reports Sky Sports.

The 20-year-old defender has been tipped for a bright future in the game, and has also attracted admiring glances from Serie 'A' giants Inter Milan.

Barca boss Gerardo Martino has been credited with an interest in bringing Balanta to Camp Nou, although the player was quick to play down rumours of any official approach.

"As far as I know, there hasn't been a Colombian playing for Barcelona," he said in an interview with Sport. "I would be the first one in the history of the club.

"If it's true, I would be very proud. If it's not, I will try to keep doing things like I have done up until now.

"I have played a few games in the first division and I have to keep going this way - working hard, doing things correctly with effort and sacrifice, in the same way as all of my team-mates."

Balanta can operate at left-back as well as in central defence, and cites current Barcelona star Gerard Pique as a player he looks up to, and models his game on.

The opportunity to line up alongside his boyhood hero would be an offer surely too good to turn down, meaning Inter must be regarded as second favourites behind Barcelona to secure the centre-back's signature.

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