According to a report, Napoli have joined Tottenham in the transfer hunt for Hellas Verona midfielder Antonin Barak this summer.
Spurs are facing a pivotal end to the season, with their Champions League fate sure to affect their deal hopes. Antonio Conte’s side sit fifth in the Premier League, four points behind Arsenal.
Manager Conte reportedly wants as many as six new signings to bolster his team ahead of next season.
And his midfield has subsequently become a key area of attention. Tottenham signed Rodrigo Bentancur from Juventus in January, and he has proved a solid addition so far.
According to Corriere della Sera, Spurs are still in the hunt for Verona’s attacking midfielder, Barak.
However, several Premier League teams are eyeing a raid on the Serie A club. What’s more, Bundesliga sides – which the report does not name – are also keen.
But Czech Republic international Barak could yet stay in Italy, with Napoli also becoming a potential transfer suitor for him.
There is doubt as to whether Spanish star Fabian Ruiz will stay in Naples, hence the interest in Barak.
Barak, 27, moved to Italy in 2017 with Udinese initially. After two and a half seasons in Udine – with contrasting fortunes due to injury – he moved on loan in January 2020 to Lecce.
Another loan move – this time to Verona – followed, and he subsequently signed a long-term deal with his current club in July last year.
This season, he has played 29 Serie A games and chipped in with 11 goals and four assists. In fact, five league games is his longest run in the team without finding the net this term.
Corriere della Sera adds that Barak will cost €20 million (£17 million) this summer, with three years left on his contract.
Conte eyeing Barak amid Serie A habit
Bentancur was not Conte’s only Tottenham signing from Serie A in January.
Dejan Kulusevski also joined from Juventus, and he has formed a fantastic understanding with Harry Kane and Son Heung-min in attack.
Barak has therefore come to Conte and Spurs director of football Fabio Paratici’s attention as another impressive player from the Italian top flight.
As per WhoScored, he has shown both attacking and defensive attributes which would serve him well in the Premier League.
As for his trademark attacking contributions, Barak has made at least one key pass in four of Verona’s past five Serie A games.
However, he can also muck in defensively and has won nine aerial duels in the same period.