Barcelona are keeping an eye on Bournemouth manager Andoni Iraola as they plan for life without Xavi moving forwards.

That’s according to Sport, who say the Catalans are ‘on the prowl’ for the Spanish coach as he impresses on the south coast.

They explain how Bournemouth are currently one of the in-form teams in the league alongside Arsenal and Liverpool, with the 1-0 win over Crystal Palace helping them to top the charts.

They’re comfortable in mid-table but have been given a ‘license to dream’ by Iraola, whose work has not gone unnoticed by some of the big clubs in Europe.

Barcelona are one of them, having already taken note of his work at Rayo Vallecano, where he also impressed. The fact he’s now repeating the trick at Bournemouth means they are ‘attentive’ to his situation.

They’re not the only ones keeping an eye on things either, with newspaper AS also singling Iraola out for praise , believing Iraola has gone beyond the ‘miracle’ that O’Neil was said to have worked last year.

They detail how the Spanish boss ‘makes magic’ at the club following the 1-0 win over Crystal Palace, arguing that if Bournemouth avoiding relegation last year under O’Neil ‘was considered a miracle’ then ‘qualifiers’ will be lacking for the work that Iraola is currently doing.

Although they are not yet mathematically safe, Bournemouth are closer to the Champions League places than they are the bottom of the table. Not only that, they current sit above big spending Chelsea to boot.

The win over Crystal Palace confirmed a third straight victory for the Cherries, lifting them to 11th place and two points more than the total they managed in the whole of last season.

Only Arsenal and Liverpool, two title contenders, are in better form than Bournemouth at this moment in time and AS say if that was extrapolated across the season, they’d be fifth.

That’s sky-high thinking of course but it’s an indicator of how good Bournemouth have been, particularly in recent weeks, and the Spanish newspaper seems to believe Iraola should be getting more praise than he is.

Indeed, he now has a potential record finish in his sights, with ninth the highest the club have ever finished in the Premier League and that very much possible.

Perhaps if he manages to beat that, and pick up even more points in the remaining games, the possibility of a move to the Camp Nou will increase too.