4 – Will Funes Mori leave?
According to reports, Funes Mori is surprisingly on the Catalan giants transfer list as the Spanish side look set to strengthen their defence this summer.
Barcelona have heavily been linked with a move for John Stones this summer, but it seems Mori has caught their eye. The Argentine international was watched twice last season by Barcelona as they ponder whether to make a summer move.
Mori joined Everton last summer from River Plate for a fee of around £9.5 million. The 25-year-old has gone on to make 37 appearances during his debut campaign scoring five goals. The Argentine-born international has also represented his country 11 times.
Mori was at the heart of the Everton backline last season and managed 1.31 tackles per 90 minutes which was just ahead of Barcelona star Piqué who managed 1.18. Standing at 6ft 3′ Mori was a real force in the air last season as he managed to 62.81% of his aerial duels which once again puts him narrowly ahead of Piqué (62.37%). Being a Barcelona player there is a certain identity of how to play. Piqué has done it for the last eight years and has certainly mastered it. Forward passes will be key playing for a club like Barcelona and Piqué managed 49.47 per 90 minutes last season which is superior to Mori who managed 36.13.
Barcelona defenders have always been ball playing defenders, and the club feels Mori fits the bill. His willingness to play from the back and not look to go long every time is an asset that has quickly caught the eye from Barcelona.
Barcelona sporting director Robert Fernandez has gone on to say they are interested in Mori but plays down an incoming bid.
“He’s a good player and we’ve known him well for a long time, but we’re not going to sign him this summer.”
Fernandez is currently in America and has been watching Argentina’s progression at this summer’s Copa América Centenario, largely because of the presence of Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano.
There seems to be clear interest from Barcelona but with the club looking at other potential targets including Lyons Samuel Umtiti a deal may not materialize despite the intensive interest.