Barcelona weighing up move for Spanish international left-back

Jordi Alba has still not renewed his contract with Valencia – due to expire at the end of the season – after reported interest from Barcelona, according to The 22-year-old left-back is thought to be keeping his options open as Barca are still waiting to reach a fresh agreement with Eric Abidal and the future of Maxwell at the Camp Nou is far from certain.

Born in L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, a city to the immediate south-west of Barcelona, Jordi Alba was rejected as a youth by La Blaugrana because of his small stature but would relish a return to Catalonia in a manner similar to that of Gerard Pique and Cesc Fabregas, both of whom left as youngsters and later returned to the club.

His profile in Spanish football has been raised further after he was given a full international debut by Vicente del Bosque in the 3-1 Euro 2012 qualifier against Scotland on October 12, and he is understood to have been the subject of interest from several foreign sides, although any initial overtures have been ignored as he prefers to remain in Spain.

As things stand Barca cannot make an offer for the player until January next year, six months before his contract runs out, but given the ages of Abidal (32) and Maxwell (30) boss Pep Guardiola may see Jordi Alba’s youth as a plus factor in any decision to replace either.

It now remains to be seen whether Barcelona’s interest comes to fruition as Guardiola might need to decide if he wants a left-back who can operate as a central defender when required, or one such as Jordi Alba who also functions as an additional midfielder.

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