After having to let go of Ansu Fati and Ez Abde in the summer, who were looking for more game-time, to Brighton & Hove Albion and Real Betis, respectively, Barcelona had to look for a left-winger to replace them.
Their search ended up with Joao Felix, who was signed on a season-long loan on low wages from Atletico Madrid. The Portuguese was never a part of Diego Simeone’s plans, and the club were ready to let him leave on another loan after a failed tenure at Chelsea.
Felix has not done particularly well at Barcelona, either, though. After starting the season well, he fell down the pecking order to Ferran Torres before eventually picking up a month-long injury.
And while the Catalans are still interested in retaining his services, they are not ready to meet Atletico’s demands in the summer, according to a report from Mundo Deportivo.
Atleti invested upwards of €120 million for him to replace Antoine Griezmann in 2019 after the Frenchman left to join Barcelona. However, he failed to make the lasting impact they were hoping for.
Five years down the line since then, they are hoping to recoup some of the amount invested in him, with the price tag set close to €70-80 million, if previous reports are to be believed.
Barcelona obviously do not have that kind of money to shell on a single player this summer, but are strategising a plan to keep him for another season by extending his loan and increasing their share of his wages.
They could also be forced to pay a loan fee, much like Chelsea’s €11 million, for the extension. No amount has been set on it currently, though, as negotiations have not started.
What Barça do have in their favour is that Simeone has made is clear that he has little to no use for him in the mid to long-term. They are more than happy with Griezmann’s role in the team since his return.
It will be interesting to see whether Barcelona eventually succumb to the pressure of pleasing Felix’s agent, Jorge Mendes, or choose…
Source link : https://barcauniversal.com/barcelona-unwilling-to-meet-atletico-madrids-demands-for-e120-million-forward-report/
Author : Udhav Arora
Publish date : 2024-02-13 16:31:22
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