Barcelona have taken the lead in the pursuit of Brazilian wonderkid Vitor Roque, after it was revealed that his priority is to move to Camp Nou ahead of anywhere else.

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What's going on with Vitor Roque and Barcelona?

The 18-year-old Athletico Paranaense striker is being watched by a number of top clubs, and Barcelona are particularly keen on him.

The club may view him as an initial backup and eventual successor to Robert Lewandowski up front, with the forward perhaps able to play a similar long-term role to the one Real Madrid have planned for fellow Brazilian Endrick.

With Barcelona currently suffering from financial issues, it may be tough for them to activate his £53m release clause right now, but they have been handed a major boost.

Roque has confirmed that he would prefer to move to Barcelona over anywhere else despite Premier League interest - even if offered more money by other clubs.

Journalist Tony Juanmarti confirmed this on Twitter, in an update which will have Blaugrana fans excited over the potential move.

The reporter said: "At the beginning of March we already explained that Barça told Atlético Paranaense that they want to go to the end with Vitor Roque. Both parties remain optimistic; for Barça, it is key that Vitor wants to dress as a Barça player (earning less money than he could receive in England)."

Why do Barcelona want Vitor Roque?

Vitor-Roque-Athletico-Barcelona

The teenager is considered one of the biggest rising stars in Brazil and has even drawn comparisons with, and praise from, Ronaldo Nazario, who stated that he "is going to fly so high".

He has already made 40 senior appearances for Athletico, scoring ten goals and assisting three, and recently made his debut for the senior Brazil side.

Barcelona may be eyeing the likes of Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo at Real Madrid with envy, and after missing out on Endrick, they could be keen to secure the future of a promising talent of their own from Brazil, even at a premium price.

If they are able to iron out their financial issues and grant Roque his dream transfer, he could make the move to Spain and take some time to settle before fully integrating into the first team at the highest level.

With Lewandowski ageing and no other natural number nine in the Barcelona squad, he could play some part as a backup, and if he realises his potential, they could have a ready-made successor for the Pole in the future.