Barcelona are considering a move for Juventus winger Juan Cuadrado as Arsenal look like hanging on to Hector Bellerin this summer, Goal understands.
Bellerin is Barca's top target for the right-back role in 2017-18, but the Catalans are unwilling to pay in excess of €50 million for a defender and may turn their attentions to Cuadrado instead.
The Colombian international is reluctant to play as a defender and has said he hopes to stay at Juventus this summer, but the Bianconeri may sell for a fee in the region of €30m and that could suit Barca.
The Blaugrana have tracked Cuadrado for some time and were interested in the player when he was at Chelsea, but a move never materialised. With Barca prioritising their pursuit of Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti this summer, the Catalans could do with saving some funds elsewhere.
Barca will not sign anyone until July anyway as the club await much-needed funds for their transfer budget for the summer, with Marco Verratti their top target, along with a right-sided forward (with Gerard Deulofeu and Ousmane Dembele their preferred options) and a right-back.
It is no secret that Bellerin is their first choice for that position, but Arsenal do not want to sell the Catalan, who is currently away with Spain's Under-21 side at the European Championship in Poland.
Bellerin is keen on a move back to Barca, where he started his career as a youth player, and is buying a family home in the Catalan capital. However, he will not force a move after signing a new long-term contract just last year and looks set to stay for one more season in England.
With Barca in the market for a right-back and a right winger, Cuadrado could potentially be used in both of those roles next season, either as a defender with licence to get forward like Dani Alves or as a more orthodox attacker. His age (29) is perhaps the only concern, although he could represent a good option for the short term.
Due to the difficulties with Bellerin, Barca recently reactivated their interest in Benfica right-back Nelson Semedo, but the Portuguese champions want €50m for the 23-year-old and that has deterred the Blaugrana.
New coach Ernesto Valverde also has Sergi Roberto and Aleix Vidal in his squad and although the former was found out in some of the big games last season, the latter was starting to show real promise before picking up a serious injury which ruled him out for the last few months of the campaign.
With that in mind, Valverde could decide — as Luis Enrique did last summer — that it is worth waiting until a move for Bellerin can be completed, with Cuadrado an intriguing compromise for the time being.