Aston Villa and Roma could battle it out for the signature of Rangers fullback Borna Barisic, according to Calciomercato.com.
The Italian website claims that the Croatian international is attracting interest from both teams, with the player out of contract at the end of the season.
Barisic’s availability on a free transfer is said to be of particular interest to Roma as they consider ways to strengthen their options at left-back.
Leonardo Spinazzola could leave when his own contract expires in June, and they have also put Nicola Zalewski up for sale.
Barisic has struggled for form and fitness this season
The 30-year-old started off the campaign very strongly, having contributed 4 assists in his first 5 matches for the Gers, but things have gone awry since then.
Barisic’s performances declined at the same time as the club’s form worsened under the management of Michael Beale. After Philippe Clement‘s appointment, he picked up a thigh problem in the Belgian’s first match in charge against Hibernian and he has now been dropped by Croatia for the international fixtures later this month.
Rangers won’t be able to compete with wages from abroad
Even if the Light Blues were contemplating keeping Barisic, it’s unlikely that they could match the offers he would receive from foreign clubs.
He is not one of the highest earners at Ibrox and, considering his recent form, the club are probably unwilling to give him a higher salary. It’s expected that Barisic will sign a pre-contract agreement with another team at some point in the New Year. Whether Aston Villa or Roma will be at the front of the queue to secure his services, we shall have to wait and see.