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Report: Liverpool battling Manchester United for Barcelona defender

ESPN claim Liverpool are battling Manchester United to sign Barcelona star Ronald Araujo – with Liverpool scouts watching him throughout 2021.

Araujo, 22, joined Barcelona back in 2018 from Uruguayan side Boston River for less than £3million. He has since broken into the first team.

Playing 46 of his 52 games over the last 18 months, Araujo is now an established member of Barca’s defence – and for Uruguay, with five caps.

He has featured in all of Barcelona’s La Liga matches this season when he has been available – missing four with a hamstring injury.

Barcelona are trying to hand Araujo a new deal until the summer of 2026 – but fear Liverpool and United’s interest could see him reject a contract.

Best Benchwarmer At EVERY Premier League Team

His current deal expires in June 2023 – and Barcelona will have to decide when to give up, and cash in on the South American defender.

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Liverpool and United eye Araujo: A good signing, but does not start

Araujo is a top player with enormous potential. Not only that, but the Uruguay ace also has got versatility on his side – right back, and centre-back.

Both Liverpool and United have starting right-backs in Trent Alexander-Arnold and Aaron Wan-Bissaka – Araujo does not overtake them.

At centre-back, both clubs are well-stocked – and Araujo does not go into the starting line-up. But he is certainly good enough to eventually get there.

Manchester United perhaps need him slightly more, especially if they pursue a system with a back three. Sport say his release clause is £169m.

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