According to Goal, Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has confirmed that Memphis Depay intends to try and seal a move to Barcelona in January after a transfer fell through in the recent window.
Aulas commented on the failed deal in a press conference earlier today, with Lyon’s head honcho adding that the forward is ‘disappointed’ at the Catalan outfit after the failed saga.
According to De Telegraaf, La Liga deemed that Barcelona could not afford to sign the 26-year-old on deadline day even after Lyon dropped their asking price for the star.
De Telegraaf add that Lyon lowered their demands by €5m, asking for an initial fee of €20m plus €5m in add-ons – despite previously agreeing a transfer with Barcelona that was worth more.
The Dutch publication report that the Blaugrana ultimately couldn’t fund a move as a result of Ousmane Dembele rejecting a move to Manchester United.
Here’s what Aulas had to say on the Depay situation:
“Since the beginning I have been clear with Memphis, I spoke with president Bartomeu at Barcelona twice, he told me he couldn’t see how things could happen.”
“I know that Koeman made him continue to hope and that Memphis was ready to make sacrifices. Today, he is disappointed, but not towards Lyon, more towards Barcelona.”
“He is going to do everything he can to find himself in a position where he moves there in January.”
“It is not up to me to make that decision, it is Juninho, in the same way that he has taken full responsibility for transfer situations with Vincent Ponsot and Rudi Garcia. He fought with everything he had for Memphis to stay.”
“I have not abandoned the idea of extending [Depay’s] contract, but as he has always said no, it looks difficult to do.”
Depay has missed out on the chance to team up with his former Holland national team boss Ronald Koeman at the Camp Nou for now.
Barcelona already forced Luis Suarez out of the club during the window, meaning that they’ve now failed to land a replacement for their third-highest scorer ever.
Depay has already bagged four goals this season from six outings, with a hat-trick in Lyon’s opener the highlight.
The charismatic attacker has really established himself as one of the world’s quality forwards after a disastrous time at Man United by contributing 58 goals and 43 assists in 143 appearances for Lyon.
Depay is the exact kind of all-around attacking threat that would’ve been perfect to line up alongside Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann, the ace is both a scorer and creator and would some much-needed physicality to their frontline.