Benitez, who just this week was appointed as Walter Mazzarri’s replacement at the Stadio San Paolo, has reportedly made clear his hopes for capturing the Argentine midfielder this summer.
Mascherano, who played under Benitez at Liverpool, has featured predominantly at the Camp Nou as a centre-back.
It is believed that a deal for the 28-year-old is very difficult, but not entirely impossible, with Barca known to be in the market for centre-back alternatives.
Next on Benitez’ list is Brazilian international Ramires, who the Spaniard has just finished working with at Chelsea.
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