Barcelona set to beat Real Madrid to Pablo Torre deal

Barcelona are close to agreeing a deal to sign Pablo Torre from Racing Santander, beating Real Madrid to land the player, sources have told ESPN.

The transfer of the 18-year-old attacking midfielder is being finalised and an agreement between all parties is close, sources said.

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A number of top teams including Madrid have been tracking Torre, who has been starring for Racing this season, but Barca moved to wrap up negotiations on Friday.

The Spain Under-19 international has scored six goals in 21 appearances — 18 of them starts — for Racing to help them top their group in the Primera RFEF, the third tier of Spanish football.

Torre has a €10 million release clause in his contract but Barcelona have been negotiating to pay a reduced initial fee plus variables.

Barca have made a habit of prioritising emerging Spanish talent, signing Pedri from Las Palmas in 2019 and promoting academy youngsters such as Gavi and Nico to the first team.

Torre is viewed as a potential future star but would be expected to initially feature for the club’s reserve team Barcelona B, before challenging for a first-team place in the medium term.