The Inter striker has been linked with a move to Barcelona, but a former Blaugrana forward has said that jelling with a legend may not be easy
Former Argentina forward Javier Saviola has warned Inter striker Lautaro Martinez over forming a partnership with Lionel Messi, saying that playing with an all-time great ”seems easy but it is not.”
Martinez has been one of the stars of Serie A in 2019-20, scoring 16 goals in 31 appearances before the coronavirus outbreak brought football across Europe to a halt.
Goal has reported that Barcelona have made Martinez their top priority this summer and are ready to offer the 22-year-old a contract worth €10 million (£9m/$11m) a year.
Martinez is currently available for a fee of €111 million (£97m$121m), with that clause set to expire on July 15.
The Blaugrana are eyeing Martinez as a long-term replacement for Luis Suarez, with the Uruguay forward having turned 33 in January.
Martinez would appear to be a natural fit at Camp Nou, and Saviola has said that the forward would be a great addition for Barcelona.
“Honestly for me he is a player who can come in handy for Barcelona,” Saviola said of Martinez in an Instagram chat with Goal.
“We know what it means to be next to Suarez, Messi and other great players,” Saviola added. “I am not saying that it is easy to play with them.”
Saviola brought up the example of Paulo Dybala, who has struggled to find a rhythm with Messi when the pair have been on the pitch together with Argentina.
“Dybala said it was difficult with Messi and I supported him because it requires a high level of concentration, to be at his pace,” said Saviola, who represented Barcelona between 2001 and 2007.
“It seems easy but it is not.”
Martinez does have experience playing alongside Messi, having already earned 17 senior caps for Argentina and scored nine international goals.
Though he’s been tipped to shine at Camp Nou, not every observer believes a move to Barcelona would be right for Martinez.
“If I were him, I would stay at Inter, because at Barca he would be a substitute,” former Real Madrid boss Fabio Capello said Monday in an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport.