There are only seven days left until the contract expires. Ousmane Dembele with Barca. A contract that is unaffordable at this time because it was signed five summers ago, in wasteful times, just after the traumatic departure of Neymar to the Paris SG. Neither one nor the other have come out well from the enormous challenge they faced since 2017.
The Brazilian star has been in decline, without reaching the goal of the Champions League in France, overshadowed, also by the emergence of Mbappé. The young Frenchman who promised so much (Barça spent 50% of the 222 million he received for Neymar), has not ended up fulfilling any of those promises. And now, seven days before Dembélé’s bond with Barça expires, the mystery about his future continues. Mystery to the end.
Xavi has always wanted him by his side. For this reason, he exhausted the last six months of his contract, despite the fact that Mateu Alemany, Barça’s director of football, publicly opened the exit door for him in January, taking advantage of the winter window. A door that he did not cross.
The striker refused, backed by the coach’s faith, he got away with it and continued with the azulgrana jacket, signing another irregular course, as revealed by his poor offensive figures: one goal in 21 league games played. As much as he became, with 13 assists, the most generous player in the championship. But little, too little, for the player who became (105 million + 40 in variables) the third most expensive in the history of Barça.
Dembélé is free on June 30 and continues without saying anything about his future. It is not like, for example, Rüdiger, who exhausted his contract and signed with Madrid. Or Christensen and Kessié, already committed to Barça, although it has not yet been made public. The French maintains that contradictory position of January that unhinged the Barça sports management. I want to stay, the striker has been saying privately. But then his agents work in another direction.
No public appearances
In addition, for months, years that the voice of Dembele is never heard in the press room at the Camp Nou. And so Xavi walks, disoriented no matter how much he is planning the new course thinking that he will not be there. As much as the Paris SG option fades because the arrival of Louis Fieldsthe new sports adviser of Al-Khelaifibet on forming a block that supports the stars, and in this order (Mbappe, Messi and Neymar), beyond the unsuccessful luxury that has characterized it in the last five years.
PSG is preparing the exchange of Pochettino for Galtier, the Nice coach, in an operation that between the settlement and the hiring of the new coach could cost him 25 million euros.
It remains to be seen, however, if Tuchel is able to convince the new property (the owner is the American Todd Boehly, able to do without Marina Granovskaiathe Russian-Canadian executive who built the team together with Abramovich) that Dembélé is a safe bet without, of course, reaching the galactic salary he has received because Joseph Maria Bartomeu He understood that he was the right man to replace the departure of the Brazilian.
The French striker is 25 years old. In other words, a privileged age to look out on the market with the letter of freedom under your arm, although conditions have changed substantially after the pandemic, together with a low yield considering its enormous potential. And Xavi, meanwhile, awaits the winger he needs to give flight to his tactical system, convinced as follows that well worked Dembélé could be “the best player in the world in his position”.
That argument made him resist in January when everyone, except the coach, pushed him to leave the Camp Nou, tired as he is Germany that the striker’s agents continue without responding to the renewal offer made in December.
And Dembélé, as it happens in the field, continues to be disconcerting for Barça, who are looking for a winger, although their weak position in the market complicates, for example, the arrival of raphinha (Brazilian from Leeds, 25 years old, the same age as Ousmane), whose agent is decorationvery close to Laporta.
But what the English club is asking for (a minimum of 50 million euros) makes his arrival difficult because Arsenal has already shown interest in hiring him. And Barça’s top priority is hiring Lewandowski to shore up the attack, while Dembélé continues to play what he likes the most. To the mystery.