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Forget Verratti - Barcelona better call Saul

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The midfield hit a sublime hat-trick for the Under-21s

Spain v Italy: Semi Final - 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship Photo by Adam Nurkiewicz/Getty Images

Marco Verratti has hogged the headlines with regards a move to Barcelona this summer, but Saul Niguez has surely just made the Blaugrana sit up and take notice.

The Atletico Madrid midfielder has been linked with a move to Barca as a "back-up", should the club fail to land the Paris Saint-Germain star, but was in truly stunning form for the Spain Under-21s in their victory against Italy on Tuesday night.

His first goal was clinical, the second an absolute thunderbolt and the third a cute first-time finish that left the goalkeeper absolutely no chance.

The goalkeeper by the way? Oh that would just have been AC Milan's Gianluigi Donnarumma, arguably the most promising young stopper on the planet.

Saul's hat-trick ensured Spain will meet Germany in the final and means the 22-year-old has now scored in each of his last five games for the Under-21s (thanks Opta).

The Spaniard is also now the competition's top scorer and is just the third Spanish player ever to score a hat-trick at the U21 Euros.

He's also younger than Verratti, and quite possibly cheaper, but like the PSG man, luring him away from his club will prove no easy task.

Ahead of the game it was Marco Asensio who had been the star of the show, leaving many Barca fans wondering what might have been, and casting envious looks at the Real Madrid starlet.

Tonight it's all about Saul, are you watching Barca?