Benfica prepare loan for Samuel Umtiti
Benfica are reportedly keen to sign Samuel Umtiti on loan from Barcelona in the January transfer window.
According to a Portuguese journalist Pedro almeidaSamuel Umtiti is the subject of Benfica’s interest in a loan transfer in the January transfer window. The Portuguese giants could talk to Barcelona about the possibility of sealing a temporary transfer when the two sides meet in the UEFA Champions League later this month.
Samuel Umtiti joined Barcelona from Lyon in the summer of 2016 and made an immediate impression at Camp Nou, creating hopes of being Carles Puyol’s long-term successor. However, after a good start to life at the Catalan club, the Frenchman suffered a dizzying drop in his fortune.
A string of injuries has hindered his progress enormously, and Umtiti is currently just an emergency option for Barcelona. The 27-year-old has yet to make a single appearance for Barcelona this quarter and is considered in excess of Camp Nou demands. Now Benfica are on the verge of offering Umtiti an escape from his struggles with the Blaugrana.
The Portuguese giants were forced to enter the transfer market for a center-back. That’s because key defender Lucas Verissimo is out for the remainder of the season after sustaining a long-term knee injury last Sunday.
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The Brazilian defender suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee and will undergo surgery before the long road to recovery begins for him. As a result, Benfica will have to dip their toes into the transfer market in January with Barcelona outcast Samuel Umtiti becoming a target.
However, signing the 27-year-old this winter might not be a straightforward task for Benfica as he recently claimed he was determined to succeed at Barcelona. Nevertheless, the Portuguese giants are expected to make their initial loan offer later this month, when they meet Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League.
Barcelona are unlikely to be reluctant to deal with Benfica as a solid stay in Lisbon could help them squeeze a useful sum from the sale of Umtiti next summer. So it remains to be seen whether the French defender will travel to Estadio da Luz on loan in January or whether he will stay at Camp Nou instead.