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Madjid Bougherra's Link with Barcelona Link is Good News for Algeria
Whether it is real or imagined, talk linking Madjid Bougherra with a summer move to a European superpower can only be good news for Algeria's hopes of doing well in South Africa.

World Cup year is always a time for players to make their name and if Bougherra feels ready to make the sort of jump in quality required to go from the Scottish Premier League with Rangers to joining the likes of Barcelona and Sevilla, he will have to show it on the biggest stage.

The four-year cycle seems to spark these tales and, eight years ago, the Republic of Ireland defender Gary Breen, now of Barnet, was even linked with a move to the Nou Camp.

After the fall out that came from his late return from Algeria's celebrations in November, with his Rangers team-mates queueing up to criticise him,

Bougherra has knuckled down in Scotland once again and, having come back from playing his part in the African Nations Cup, those rows and issues seem to be in his past.

But the same cannot be said of the reports consistently linking him with a move away from Ibrox. His current manager Walter Smith insists that the defender will not be affected by the talk of a big summer move.

"From any player's point of view it would be nice to be linked with Barcelona and top Spanish teams. However accurate or inaccurate that is, I don't know," Smith said.

"But the only thing that concerns us is that he stays here and plays his football and he has been doing that very well for us. He has actually missed quite a number of games this season through injury and then being away at the African Nations Cup.

"It's good to have him back and hopefully he can stay injury-free and play for us in the manner in which he has done. He has been excellent since he came to us."

Smith maintains that despite the Glasgow club's grim financial position, they are not obliged to sell this summer but a good performance in the World Cup certainly has a habit of inflating player's price tags.

It is all music to the ears of the Algeria coach Rabah Saadane, who can expect that one of his key players will be even more motivated than he could have hoped which will only serve to boost the chances of the Desert Foxes.

Read More: Algeria World Cup 2010 Desert+Foxes

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