By London correspondent Tony Hughes
Barcelona have launched a bid to sign Tottenham target Sofiane Boufal, the player’s agent has revealed.
Football Insider revealed in April that Spurs were closely monitoring the highly rated Lille winger and scouted him in the Coupe de la Ligue final at Parc de Princes.
However, Spanish champions Barcelona are keen to sign the 22-year-old Morocco international, who has been compared to Leicester sensation Riyad Mahrez for his dashing style of play, individualism and contributions in the final third.
Boufal’s representative Yvan Le Mee has confirmed that he has met with the Camp Nou hierarchy over a potential move.
“We did have a meeting with the leadership of FC Barcelona in the last few weeks,” he told Le10 Sport, as quoted by the Evening Standard. “There is an interest.
“We have also initiated discussions with three other clubs that interest us, but they either have or will change their coach or the coach is in charge of a national team at the Euros,” the agent added to Le10 Sport. “In England, there is interest, but the English market is just beginning. A transfer of 20 and 25 million euros is not resolved in two weeks, of course.”
Boufal joined Lille for £3million from then-Ligue 2 club Angers in January 2015 and has made such an impact in the top flight that he is now rated at £19.6million by his club.
The Morocco international has risen to prominence in Ligue 1 this season, scoring 11 goals and supplying four assists in 29 league matches.
Such has been the success he has enjoyed over his first year at Stade Pierre-Mauroy, the club have already accepted that selling him in the summer is inevitable, albeit for a far greater fee than their initial outlay.
“Keeping Boufal this summer? It’s virtually impossible,” LOSC president Michel Seydoux told France Football recently. “Of course it’s sad, but the gap between ourselves and England is growing very quickly. It dictates that we can’t keep him.”
Seydoux’s comments strongly indicate that Paris-born Boufal will follow Mahrez in making the journey across the English Channel in the summer.
In other Tottenham transfer news, the club are closing in on two deals costing £42million in total.