Transfer news: Gerardo Martino rules out Barcelona move for Chelsea defender David Luiz and Liverpool centre-back Daniel Agger
'Tata' says he is happy with his current options and that he can strengthen the squad in January if needs be
Saturday 17 August 2013
Barcelona manager Gerardo Martino has dismissed speculation that the Catalan club will try and sign either David Luiz or Daniel Agger after admitting he is happy with his defensive options.
Martino took over at the Nou Camp this summer after Tito Vilanova was forced to resign due to his on-going battle with throat cancer, and having analysed the squad at first-hand, it was believed that ‘Tata’ wanted to strengthen the defence.
Reports of a £25m bid for Chelsea defender Luiz surfaced last week, but Jose Mourinho has remained defiant that the Brazilian will not be leaving the club this summer, and Liverpool’s vice-captain Daniel Agger was also believed to be on Martino’s wish list.
But speaking in a press conference ahead of their opening La Liga match against Levante, Martino said: “We have Puyol, Pique, Mascherano, Bartra, even Adriano. If there's an injury, January transfer window is only a few months away.”
The Primera Division champions suffered with injuries and suspension at the back last season, and long-term doubts over the fitness of Carles Puyol remain after he endured an injury-hit campaign, in which Gerard Pique and Javier Mascherano were also missing from the side.
Their alarming 7-0 aggregate defeat to eventual Champions League winners Bayern Munich highlighted the problem, and with the signing of Brazilian forward Neymar already secured, Barcelona were expected to go after an experienced defender.
But both Mourinho and Brendan Rodgers of Liverpool wish to keep hold of Luiz and Agger respectively, and it now seems that Martino will stick with his options currently available to him in the hope that they remain fit this season.
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