Chelsea may miss out in the race for Monaco forward Radamel Falcao, as reports have emerged claiming that he is being primed for a Barcelona move if they somehow lose Lionel Messi.
According to French newspaper Le 10 Sport, which quotes FIFA agent and transfer busybody Francois Gallardo, the Colombian - rated at a cool €100million - may be on his way to the Nou Camp this summer, as the Catalan giants are preparing for the surprise departure of their star player.
The rumours suggesting Lionel Messi could leave Barca have taken on a new relevance of a late and, with Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain linked with stunning €250million bids which would trigger his release clause, the previously thought impossible transfer could well become a reality at the end of this season.
And Gallardo now claims that if he were to move, Falcao would be the man Barcelona would look to as a replacement, potentially scuppering any plans Jose Mourinho has of taking him to Stamford Bridge.
Gallardo said: “Barça would have Falcao . I think if a player transfers, very important, this could be a big blow. Everyone knows it. This is something that will be difficult but not impossible. He will be bought with money from the sale of Lionel Messi."
It’s makes for grim reading for Chelsea fans, who would be forgiven for anticipating the purchase of a world-class striker in preparation for next term. It’s widely expected that Mourinho will look to bolster his frontline, and could allow Fernando Torres, Samuel Eto’o or Demba Ba to depart.