As far as negotiating tactics go, publicly declaring you need to sell some players to raise money is always likely to make it harder to get the best price for your players. It’s also baffling that Barcelona spent the entire Summer trying to sign Neymar when it looks like they need to sell players just to break even.
According to a report in The Daily Mail, Barcelona need to raise around £110m in player sales this season to help balance the books. They suggest Man United will be particularly interested in signing Ivan Rakitic and Samuel Umtiti after they were linked with them this Summer.
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Those two players would also be ideal targets for Arsenal if they decided to throw some money around in January. They have a talented team but some experience and talent to bolster the centre of defence and midfield could make a huge difference for Unai Emery’s team.
So it sounds like Rakitic and Umtiti could be available, looking at the squad here’s some other players that could be sold on to raise that money:
Dembele is the obvious candidate to leave at some point soon when you consider the difficulty he will have in forcing one of Messi, Suarez or Griezmann out of the starting line up. An obvious destination would be PSG if he was willing to return to France, it could even act as a bit of a sweetener if Barca decide to pursue Neymar again next Summer.
Admittedly the Chilean won’t fetch a giant transfer fee, but he looks like he’s surplus to requirements just now and would still be able to do a job at a decent level for another couple of years. He’s 32 so wouldn’t be a long term signing, but a return to Italy or Germany would make sense for him to enjoy the best of his remaining playing years.
He’s a terrific player and a regular in the team but you feel his versatility sometimes counts against him. It’s hard to say if he’s definitely at his best in midfield or at full-back and it leads to him being seen as second choice in both positions by some fans. He would be able to fetch a high transfer fee and would attract a lot of interest.
I mean, surely not right? This would be the boldest of moves, but the emergence of Ansu Fati and the absolute obsession Barcelona have with trying to bring Neymar back to the club does make it look like the Frenchman isn’t completely untouchable. This could be complicated with the ongoing issues surrounding his transfer fee from Atletico, but if he became available then Man United could finally have their exceptional goal threat they are crying out for.
No moves can happen right now with the transfer windows being shut, but it’s worth keeping an eye on any news surrounding Barcelona in January to see if any players are being offered around.