Juventus-contracted youngster Sebastian Giovinco is allegedly attracting the attention of Barcelona scouts, according to Spanish media reports.
The diminutive attacking midfielder is currently on loan at Empoli, who face FC Zurich tonight in Switzerland in a bid to protect their 2-1 UEFA Cup First Round first leg lead.
Capped at each level of the Italian youth system, Giovinco, who can play in midfield or up front, recently made the step up to the U-21s (pictured), with whom he debuted against Albania in the Euro 2008 qualifiers.
While Barcelona already have plenty of young striking talent, the Catalan giants are rumoured to be interested in Giovinco's versatility, and as such are expected to scout him this evening.
However, whether these latest Spanish press reports are true or not remains to be seen.
In any case, Empoli coach Gigi Cagni is eager to see his side protect their lead.
He remarked, "Everybody wants to progress in the UEFA Cup and we are going out there to do so, but we're also keeping an eye on upcoming league games.
"I’ve been able to watch several Zurich games and they are a talented side with lots of power in the air.
"We won’t be thinking about the victory in the first leg. We will just play our football."
That 2-1 home win comprised Empoli's first ever European result, the Tuscan minnows having qualified by virtue of a 7th place finish in Serie A last season.