Monday, January 30, 2023

Barcelona ‘planning seven exits’ including Frenkie de Jong after Bayern Munich loss

Barcelona ‘planning seven exits’ including Frenkie de Jong after Bayern Munich loss

According to reports, Barcelona is planning as many as seven departures, including Manchester United and Chelsea target Frenkie de Jong. 

Bayern Munich defeated Xavi’s team 3-0 in the Champions League on Wednesday night, and a spot in the Europa League now beckons.

And because the La Liga giants need to balance their budgets, it appears that a player exodus could occur this winter.

Barcelona entered their encounter against Bayern aware that they had already been relegated to the Europa League.

And things got worse for Xavi’s side on a chastening night at the Nou Camp, with goals from Sadio Mane, Eric Choupo-Moting and Benjamin Pavard giving Julian Nagelsmann’s side all three points.

In the summer, when they lavished so much money on players, Barcelona did not expect to be eliminated so quickly.

Now, according to Sport, the Catalan giants are planning as many as seven departures this winter in an effort to rebalance their budget and revamp their squad.

De Jong, who was linked with Manchester United and Chelsea in the summer, will be permitted to leave.

United and Barcelona reportedly agreed on a £72 million fee for the Netherlands international, but switched their attention to Casemiro when it became evident that De Jong was not interested in joining.

United and Chelsea may now take advantage of the player’s probable availability in January, since he may be available to them.

Since his 2019 arrival from Ajax, the midfielder has wavered in popularity, and Barcelona is aware that he might fetch a substantial transfer fee.

It appears that De Jong’s time at the club is limited, especially given his lack of regular playing time this season.

Injury-plagued Memphis Depay is available for transfer from Barcelona, while Jordi Alba and Gerard Pique have both been deemed surplus to requirements.

Sergio Busquets is expected to leave the club for free at the end of the current season, having spent his whole career there.

And youthful duo Pablo Torre and Inaki Pena could depart on loan, with Barcelona preferring that they spend more time in La Liga to acclimate to first-team play.

Catalonia appears to be in for a winter of transition.

And Xavi is conscious that results must improve if he is to continue as Barcelona’s manager, especially given the support he received in the summer.

While Xavi has been criticized for his problems in the Barcelona dugout, Thierry Henry believes the club would have exploded if his former teammate had not been in charge.

“Look at the end of the day results matter, we’ve seen it with Steven Gerrard,” he said.

“The problem at Barcelona is that you don’t have time.

“But yeah, let me tell you if it was another coach right now at Barcelona, dealing with what’s happening, it would have been a volcano even more than what it is… the volcano would have erupted. But because it’s Xavi, it’s kind of okay.”

And he added: “They are second in the league. We all know [Robert] Lewandowski should have scored at Bayern but it’s not his [Xavi] fault that Lewandowski missed three chances and it’s not his fault if they didn’t call the penalty on [Denzel] Dumfries, but you’re the coach at Barcelona and you’re going to be judged.

“Barca have gambled on the Champions League and they need that money because of what they did in the summer.”

Xavi personally addressed the loss against Bayern by stating, “Today we have not reached their level, they have been better.

“In Munich it was us, but today they have been better, more intense.

“The elimination affected us psychologically.

“Tomorrow, we train and think about La Liga.

“There were high expectations, we had a difficult group.

“Everything possible happened to us. It has been very cruel. We didn’t compete well today.”

Barcelona ‘planning seven exits’ including Frenkie de Jong after Bayern Munich loss

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