The Barcelona-Dembele saga finally seems to have reached a conclusion as Barcelona have now placed the Frenchman on the market. The club is expecting the player to be sold this winter.
What exactly has transpired between the player and the club?
Ousmane Dembele was all set to sign his contract extension with Barcelona in December but on the signing date, everything changed. Numerous sources have reported that the player’s agent Moussa Sissoko changed and upped the player’s financial demands.
Dembele is said to have demanded €200 million gross across five seasons in wages with a €20 million signing-on bonus for both, the player and the agent. There has been speculation regarding the possible reason for this last-minute change and it can be traced to Barcelona completing the signing of Ferran Torres for €55 million from Manchester City.
Barcelona are in no position to afford such numbers and made that clear to the player and his agent. The club did not rescind their offer but did not make any substantial changes as well. Instead, the former La Liga champions gave the 24-year-old some extra-time to think about their offer. With that said, the French winger had time until now to decide if his future was at Barcelona but with Barcelona omitting the winger from the squad that will take on Atheltic club in the Copa Del Rey on Friday, it is clear that Barca have withdrawn their offer and are no longer looking to extend their ties with the former Borussia Dortmund man.
What has been said?
Reliable football transfer journalist Fabrizio Romano has confirmed on Twitter that the saga has indeed reached a conclusion. Ousmane Dembele will not be continuing at Barcelona and may have very well played his last game for the Blaugrana in the recently contested El Classico.
Barça-Dembélé, it’s over 🚨
Barcelona director Alemany announces: “It’s clear that Dembélé does NOT want to continue with Barcelona. He doesn’t want to be part of our project”.
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) January 20, 2022
Barcelona’s sporting director Mateu Alemany announced:
“It’s clear that Dembélé does NOT want to continue with Barcelona. He doesn’t want to be part of our project”.
“We told Dembélé he has to leave immediately. We expect Ousmane to be sold before Jan 31”.
So what next?
While it is still unclear the kind of sum that Barcelona are looking to get for Dembele, the earliest speculation suggests that a fee in the range of €20 million should be enough to sign the World Cup winner this winter. With only 6 months left in his current contract, the club is not in a position to demand a high figure for the winger. Moreover, the player is not exactly in a rich goal-scoring form. But, Barcelona want to part ways with Dembele immediately as the general consensus in the club is that the player’s presence could become a toxic one in the dressing room.
The player is said to have attracted interest from the Premier League with the likes of Newcastle United, Chelsea and Manchester United said to be interested in signing him. Earlier, there were reports suggesting that Barcelona have offered Dembele to Newcastle and Manchester United for a fee of around €20 million.
Now, Shay Lugassi on Twitter has reported that Chelsea are one of the three clubs that are interested in the French winger and have reportedly offered him a lucrative contract with an attractive signing-on bonus.
“Chelsea are one of three clubs that have offered Dembele’s agent a big signing bonus and tempting demands. Thomas Tuchel really wants Ousmane and he remembers the beautiful things the Frenchman did in Borussia Dortmund.”
Finally, this saga reaches an end and Barcelona have found the answer that they have been looking for. With Dembele out, and this being clear, the team can now focus on achieving their goals for the season which would be to win the Copa Del Rey, and qualify for the UEFA Champions League. Not to forget, Barcelona in the Europa League will not find it easy to go all the way.
A medical student with an avid interest for the game.