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Barcelona close to Gonzalo Higuain deal

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Former Real Madrid striker, Gonzalo Higuain, is on the brink of making a spectacular return to La Liga with Barcelona, after just one season with Napoli in Serie A.

The Marca in Spain has reported that Barcelona's director of football, Andoni Zubizarreta, has reacted swiftly to the request of new coach Luis Enrique that he has made Higuain his top attacking signing of the summer.

Higuain has apparently agreed terms with the Catalan giants and now it is down to Andoni Zubizarreta to sit down with Napoli chairman, Aurelio de Laurentiis, who has a reputation of being an extremely tough negotiator. 

Rafa Benitez picked up the Argentinean from Real Madrid for €40 million last summer after he was surplus to requirements under new coach Carlo Ancelotti following the arrival of Gareth Bale.

During his first season in Italy, he found the back of the net on 17 occasions in the League, helping his new team to third in Serie A and Champions League football, which makes one wonder why Napoli would want to sell their star man.

In football, money talks, and if Enrique wants to get his top target this summer, Barcelona would need to fork out around €50 million.

One expects Enrique would have spoken to Messi about wanting to bring his compatriot to the club and would welcome the move.

Adding to this, Manchester City's Sergio Aguero is also apparently on Enrique's shopping list and if the former Barcelona play-maker can pull off both signings, the Catalans' will have a rather potent force upfront: "Made in Argentina."

Higuain didn't start for Argentina in the opening game of the World Cup due to a slight injury, however if he manages to get some goals and Argentina can progress deeper into the tournament, you can almost guarantee Napoli chairman, Aurelio de Laurentiis, will push Barcelona to the limit during negotiations.

The striker has plenty of La Liga experience after signing for Real Madrid from River Plate in 2007. During a six-year spell at the Santiago Bernabeu he scored 107 goals in 190 appearances, the sort of form Enrique will be expecting if a deal can be secured.

When asked by Spanish news agency Efe about his thoughts of linking up with Messi at Barcelona, the striker responded: "Of course I would. I enjoy playing alongside him for the national team. Obviously it would be a great pleasure, but for now my mind is on the World Cup".

If Higuain finds himself representing the Catalan Giants next season he will join an illustrious list of players to have featured for both Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Luis figo made the switch to Real from Barcelona in 2000 after five-years at the Camp Nou, Brazillian Ronaldo spent one season at Barcelona from 1996/97 before switching to Inter Milan for five-years and then to Real Madrid.

New coach Luis Enrique will be perfectly placed to help Higuain deal with the pressure of playing for both clubs. He played for Real from 1991-1996 before making the move to the coastal city for the next eight-years of his career.

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Topics:
Barcelona
La Liga
Football
Lionel Messi
Real Madrid

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