Barcelona Set To Beat Manchester United To The Signing Of In-Demand Striker By Offering Depay Plus Cash
Written By Onyeka Daniel
Spanish LaLiga side, Barcelona are already making plans for next season as they prepare to totally revamp their squad and bringing in some new faces, but they will be very limited in their spending, partly due to their early ouster from the UEFA Champions League group stage, dropping down to the Europa League instead.
Despite the presence of Robert Lewandowski, the club are on the lookout for a another quality striker to add to the squad that can take over from the Polish striker in the future and they’re said to be on the trail of Dutch striker, Cody Gakpo.
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The in-form PSV frontman is regarded as one of European football’s most-sought after stars. Gakpo enjoyed an outstanding 2021/22 season, scoring 21 goals and adding 15 assists as he was named Eredivisie Player of the Year. Gakpo also scored an outstanding winner in the KNVB Cup final to deny Ajax a domestic double last season.
His club, PSV have resigned to fate about losing the player as he was close to joining English Premier League side, Manchester United this summer, with the player himself confirming that he had several conversations with Erik Ten Hag, but the deal eventually fell through as the club didn’t want to go through with the signing yet.
“I was close to leaving, I spoke to Erik ten Hag a few times at Manchester United,” Gakpo admitted. “In the end the deal didn’t go through, which was a shame for me and my development. And because Manchester United is one of the biggest clubs in the world, but also for PSV, because to transfer a player to Manchester United is a good thing for the club.
“It ended about a week before the end of the transfer window and in that week I had to decide if I would go to Leeds or Southampton. In the end I stayed, but it was a stressful period.” He further added.
This season, Gakpo appears to have taken his game to a whole new level entirely, as he already has 27 goal contributions this season, surpassing the tallies of 25 from Erling Haaland and 23 from Lionel Messi.
According to Sport, Barcelona are set to take advantage and try and make a deal as they’ve an ace up their sleeves to make the deal work despite not being financially buoyant.
The Blaugrana will reportedly make an offer of cash plus Memphis Depay for Gakpo. The 28-year-old star has become a bit-part player this season at Barcelona, featuring in just three games. And Memphis is desperate to move on after being frozen out of Xavi’s first-team plans.
He was the subject of interest from Tottenham and Galatasaray over the summer, though a move did not prevail. However, a return to his former club could suit all parties, with PSV landing themselves a ready-made replacement.
Depay began his career at the PSV, scoring 50 times over four seasons before sealing a move to Manchester United and then Barcelona. After Gakpo’s move to United fell through, Leeds United and Southampton were interested, but the player eventually stayed put, for the time being.
According to reports from Spain, Barcelona are already in talks with agent and intermediaries of Chelsea midfielder, Jorginho, in a bid to convince the player to join them next season as they target the player as a direct replacement for Sergio Busquets.
With a contract set to expire in June 2023, Jorginho will be free to sign a pre-contract agreement with clubs outside England in January 2023, but Chelsea are said to be preparing to make an offer for the player already.
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It has been agreed that Barcelona will come up with an offer to Jorginho, with the negotiations being spearheaded by the club’s sporting director, Mateu Alemany, making a proposal that could give the Italian the opportunity to sign the for Catalans on a free transfer.
That would mean Jorginho will remain a Chelsea player throughout the season before becoming a Barcelona player from the 2023/24 season, by the Busquets would also leave too, while the future of Frenkie De Jong remains uncertain.
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