Barcelona presidential candidate Joan Laporta believes Juventus midfielder Paul Pogba will sign for the Catalan giants this summer if he wins the upcoming election.
Speaking to Cadena Cope radio show ‘El Partido de las 12’ - and brought to our attention by ESPN - Laporta, who previously presided over Barcelona between 2003 and 2010, believes his relationship with Pogba’s agent will swing things in Barça’s favour.
Barcelona are the current favourites to sign Pogba - ahead of the likes of Real Madrid, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal - but the club’s existing transfer ban, which expires in January, means there’s a chance a rival team will successfully lure him elsewhere over the next few weeks.
But Laporta insists this won’t be a problem if he replaces Josep Maria Bartomeu as Barcelona president, due to his relationship with super agent Mino Raiola.
"The key to the signing is Mino Raiola,” Laporta stated. “It is true I have a very good relationship with him and I believe that, if I am president, Pogba will play for Barcelona.”
Barcelona to hold meeting with Juventus on Wednesday
The 53-year-old continued: ”I think it's fine that the caretaker board meets with Juve, but the one they have to speak with is Raiola -- he has the key."
Barcelona are set to hold a meeting with Juventus regarding the potential sale of Pogba on Wednesday - but there are no guarantees that a deal will be arranged, despite the fact the player wants a move to the Camp Nou.
It’s also no secret that Barcelona want to sign Pogba, and Laporta - who helped to bring Ronaldinho to the Camp Nou in 2003 - is in no doubt the 22-year-old possesses the required quality to play for the reigning European champions.
“He is very sought-after," Laporta added. "He has great quality and fits with Barca's style. It could be that he costs a lot of money -- he is a reference player like Neymar, [Luis] Suarez and Cristiano [Ronaldo], who also cost a lot.”
Barcelona must find solution for Paul Pogba
Barcelona, according to Spanish newspaper Sport, are prepared to offer as much as €90 million for Pogba, who is now widely regarded as the best young central midfielder in world football.
But they must find a solution for Pogba if he signs this summer. Barcelona are unable to register new signings until January, due to sanctions imposed on them by FIFA, and may need to loan Pogba back to Juventus for the 2015-16 campaign - or at least the first half of the upcoming season - in order to secure the midfielder’s services.
Barcelona’s first summer signing, Aleix Vidal, will spend time training with the squad until the New Year - but it’s more imperative for Pogba, who is still developing and maturing as a footballer, to be playing week-in, week-out at his age.
Should Paul Pogba join Barcelona this summer? Would Barcelona become unstoppable with Pogba? Have your say in the comments below!