Dani Garcia has been one of the most underrated midfielders in Spain over the last few seasons.
The 27-year-old has been a constant figure in Eibar’s rise from the lower leagues to the comfort of La Liga’s mid-table and has once again been a regular starter for Jose Luis Mendilibar’s perennial overachievers this season, starting 27 league games.
But with Garcia’s Eibar contract set to expire in June, he could be about to end a six-year association with the smallest club in the history of Spain’s top flight.
It is understood that Real Betis and Levante want to keep him in La Liga while Athletic Bilbao, who can only sign players from the Basque region, are very interested in the Gipuzkoa-born midfielder.
But Garcia has not agreed to move anywhere yet and, according to AS, the possibility of a switch to the Premier League still exists.
Both Newcastle United and Southampton have registered an interest in a player who would add both depth and quality in the centre of the park.
A natural ball-winner who averages 2.7 tackles and 2.5 interceptions per game in La Liga, Garcia would slot into the base of compatriot Rafa Benitez’s midfield at Newcastle, perhaps giving more creative licence to the technically gifted Jonjo Shelvey and Mikel Merino.
But if he moves to Southampton instead, Garcia could provide much-needed protection to a defence that has looked a shadow of its previously stingy self since Virgil van Dijk departed in that world-record move to Liverpool.