Quique Setien has confirmed Barcelona is considering signing another striker to ease the loss of Luis Suarez following the Uruguayan’s knee surgery.
Suarez, 32, was said to have been carrying a knee injury for a while before Barca revealed he was set for surgery on January 11.
Reports suggested that Barca only expected him to be missing for a few weeks, but a club statement the following day confirmed its worst fears, with Suarez likely to miss most of the season.
Unsurprisingly Barca has been strongly linked with several strikers since, with Osasuna’s Chimy Avila, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of Arsenal and RB Leipzig star Timo Werner all mentioned as potential targets.
And while Setien refused to comment on specific names, he did confirm Barca is contemplating making a move.
“It is true that we are considering the signing of a number nine. We still have to develop things a little more,” the head coach said ahead of the Copa del Rey trip to Ibiza.
“It’s not an issue that worries me too much, I am more concerned about the games. It’s an issue that I will have to deal with sports management about and we will see which is the most convenient.
“It’s a matter [talk of specific players] I can’t respond to you about, I won’t either. I spoke a lot with the sports management about it, but we haven’t decided on anything.
“It’s all internal, so its preferable you don’t ask me, as I won’t say anything more.”
The return of Ousmane Dembele could alleviate some of the burden on the remaining Barca attackers without Suarez, as the Frenchman is back in training after almost two months out with a thigh injury.
Dembele’s Barca career has been somewhat underwhelming so far, though Setien still has high hopes for him.
“He’s undoubtedly going to be very important,” Setien said. “He’s an extraordinary player who unfortunately hasn’t had much consistency.
“Of course, he’ll be very important, we hope he’ll help us a lot.”