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From Spain: Manchester City ‘best placed’ to sign 150-appearance Barcelona star with €120 million release clause



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Manchester City and Newcastle United are both ‘best placed’ to sign Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo this summer, according to reports from Spain.

The 25-year-old centre-back has been linked with a sensational move to the Etihad Stadium this summer, despite Pep Guardiola adding former RB Leipzig defender Josko Gvardiol to his Manchester City squad last August in a seismic £77.7 million deal.

The Sky Blues have an array of central defensive options ahead of the 2024/25 campaign, with John Stones, Ruben Dias, Manuel Akanji, Nathan Ake and Gvardiol all available to the eight-time Premier League champions.

Manchester City have been linked with signing another centre-back this summer however, with Barcelona’s Araujo subject to talk of a Premier League move, as the cash-strapped La Liga side bid to raise transfer funds.

The Uruguayan has made 150 appearances for the Catalan club, and featured 37 times for Barcelona during the most recent 2023/24 campaign.

Araujo was directly involved in three La Liga goals in 25 appearances, and also featured in eight UEFA Champions League matches for Barcelona – with the 25-year-old sent off 29 minutes into a quarter-final clash with Paris Saint-Germain in April.

Sport Witness relay claims from Spanish outlet El Chiringuito, who report that Manchester City and Newcastle United are ‘best placed’ to sign the defender this summer, after Araujo stalled contract extension talks with Nou Camp executives.

The Uruguay international is subject to ‘interest’ from both Premier League clubs, and has only two years remaining on his current Barcelona deal, which expires in 2026.

Araujo has a €120 million release clause, a fee Barcelona are ‘demanding’ in order to sell the defender this summer, according to El Chiringuito.

Manchester City and Barcelona are expected to be in transfer negotiations in the coming months, with the La Liga side interested in re-signing full-back Joao Cancelo from the Etihad Stadium, despite continued financial problems impacting a potential deal.

Cancelo could return to Spain for a second successive season-long loan, with the Portugal defender having dramatically quit Manchester City in January 2023.