Barcelona in no rush to sign defender

Barcelona sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta has said his club are in no rush to sign a new centre-back as speculation continues to link them with targets including Chelsea’s David Luiz and Liverpool’s Daniel Agger.

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Paris Saint-Germain’s Thiago Silva was widely thought to be Barcelona’s first choice to add height and strength to a back line that creaked at times last season, but the Brazilian recently signed a new deal with the Ligue 1 champions and attention has now turned elsewhere.

Vincent Kompany (Manchester City), Thomas Vermaelen (Arsenal) and Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham) have all also been mentioned as potential targets in the Catalan press, while new coach Tata Martino is reportedly keen to bring his former Newell’s Old Boys charge Santiago Vergini to the Camp Nou.

Blaugrana executive Zubizarreta told reporters covering Barca’s visit to Israel and Palestine over the weekend that bringing someone in quickly would be better, but said he was prepared to wait until the end of the summer’s transfer window, if required, to ensure the club made the right decision.

“We have until the 31st,” he said. “It is not our intention to take that long, but that is the limit. The coach is not putting us under pressure - it is logical that he wants it to happen as soon as possible so that [a new arrival] can adapt better, but [Javier] Mascherano arrived on August 28 [2010] and he adapted quickly.”

Meanwhile, Mundo Deportivo has claimed that Martino also wants to go back to Newell's to sign an eventual replacement for Victor Valdes in goalkeeper Nahuel Guzman.

Guzman, 27, was promoted from the bench at the Rosario club by Martino, and impressed as they sealed the 2012 Argentine league title and reached the recent Copa Libertadores semi-finals.

The 6' 4" 'keeper will be monitored closely by Barca this season with a view to potentially making a move when Valdes moves on at the end of his contract in June 2014, according to the Catalan daily.