Julian Araujo is a hot commodity…
Barcelona FC is pushing to sign the 21-year-old Mexican American professional soccer player and LA Galaxy right-back before the transfer window closes in Europe on Tuesday, according to ESPN.
Sources have told ESPN that Araujo would initially be registered with Barca’s B team if signed, but that the Catalan club feel he has the potential to be involved with the first team in the short term.
If Bellerin joins Sporting Lisbon this week — with sources telling ESPN that the deal is likely to happen once Tottenham Hotspur complete the signing of Pedro Porro from the Portuguese side — then Barca would be left without a natural right-back.
Jules Kounde, Ronald Araujo, Sergi Roberto and Alejandro Balde have all been used in the position this season, often at the expense of Bellerin.
Araujo, who was born in California, represented the United States at the youth level and has one cap for the senior side. However, in 2021 he switched allegiance to Mexico, although he’s not played for El Tri since winning his third cap in a friendly against Suriname in June 2022.
Barca are hopeful of closing the deal before Tuesday’s deadline but sources add it is a “complex situation.” A source close to the negotiations in the United States says “it isn’t final by any means.”
Araujo has been a regular for the Galaxy across the last two seasons and convincing the Major League Soccer side to let him leave initially on loan is not a simple task.
In addition, the operation may also have to be approved by LaLiga, although registering him with the B team could prove a workaround.
Barca were unable to register midfielder Gavi‘s new contract last week due to the league’s salary limits, although LaLiga president Javier Tebas confirmed on Monday the club do have “some room” to maneuver this month following the departures of Gerard Pique and Memphis Depay.
Pique announced his retirement in December and Memphis joined Atletico earlier in January in a deal worth an initial €3 million.