Barcelona forward Cristian Tello finds himself in a transfer window tug of war, with both Liverpool and Arsenal battling to secure his services.
The tall, wiry 22 year old has been a peripheral figure in the Barcelona side and may have to leave to gain more first team football. Arsenal boss Wenger has said that he isn’t in the market for a player this January, but is he playing a canny game and keeping his hand hidden?
Liverpool are also in the market for an attacker. They have little back up to Suarez and Sturridge, and see Tello as a player with more promise than Aspas and Victor Moses. He would certainly be a useful addition to their challenge for a Champion’s League spot.
Tello has been frustrated and frustrating at Barcelona. He burst onto the scene with a bang, scoring a debut goal within ten minutes of his first appearance. He is lightning fast, but increasingly Barcelona fans have accused him of being a one trick pony. He knocks the ball past a defender, outstrips them for pace, and then what? There is often no end product from Tello.
His one dimensional play has seen him drop further down the Barcelona pecking order, and his career at Camp Nou may have reached its natural end. Gerard Deulofeu, currently on loan at Everton, is seen as a more serious prospect for the future and will get chances in the first team next season. Ironically, on a rare start, Tello scored his first hat trick last week in the Copa Del Rey win against Levante. But it’s too little, too late as far as Barca fans are concerned.
I expect bids from both Liverpool and Arsenal within the next week, but the Emirates may be the more natural home for him. Wenger had a similar one dimensional player on his hands in Theo Walcott, and Walcott now has an all-round game to be envied. Can he produce the same trick with Tello?