Barcelona continue their preparations to face Real Sociedad as they look to go back above Real Madrid, who won their game away at Celta Vigo by a scoreline of 3-1. A win against La Real would take the Blaugrana to just a point behind league leaders Atletico Madrid, who are at 63 points after 27 games.
Ahead of their upcoming LaLiga Santander fixture, here is a look at some of the latest Barcelona news.
Ronald Koeman responds to Erling Haaland rumours
Barcelona are unsurprisingly one of many high-profile clubs in the running for Borussia Dortmund superstar Erling Haaland this summer. The Norwegian is one of the most in-demand players in world football at the moment and is wanted by several clubs including Real Madrid, Manchester United, and Manchester City among others.
Ronald Koeman, however, refused to give much away when asked about whether Barcelona could make a move for the highly-coveted 20-year-old. He said;
“[Erling] Haaland? I don’t think it’s the moment to talk about a player who is not Barca’s. Out of respect for his club and for our players especially now with the new president, a lot is being talked about next season and signings, but I don’t want to get into that conversation.”
“I want to concentrate on the game, the players we have now, and we will see next season. We will see the areas we can improve. Right now I don’t want to talk about that.”
Haaland has accumulated a stunning 21 Bundesliga goals so far this season in as many appearances, taking his overall record for Dortmund to 49 goals in his first 49 games.
Barcelona draw-up three-man shortlist for Sergio Aguero alternatives
Barcelona have identified Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal, Andre Silva of Eintracht Frankfurt, and Memphis Depay of Olympique Lyon as the three alternatives for Sergio Aguero, as per reports. The Catalans have been linked with a move for the Argentine but his agent’s demand of €10m has complicated the situation, forcing them to keep alternatives at hand should the deal fall through.
Lacazette, who has ten goals and two assists in his 24 Premier League games so far, is one of the attainable short-term alternatives for Aguero. The 29-year-old is not a guaranteed starter for Arsenal and could be lured to the Nou Camp. Silva has been in sublime form for Eintracht with 22 goals in 26 games, attracting interest from Manchester United and Atletico Madrid.
Depay has been an ‘obsession’ for Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman, who has requested his signing on a number of occasions in the past. With his contract coming to an end this summer, Depay is an achievable target for the Catalans.
Neymar’s former agent makes huge claim about return to Nou Camp
Paris Saint-Germain superstar Neymar has been tipped to return to the Nou Camp for a reunion with Leo Messi by his former agent, Andre Cury. Neymar has long been linked with a return to Spain after his world record move to the French capital, but ended up remaining with PSG.
Now, with Messi’s future in the air as well, there have been several rumors of a free transfer to PSG for the Argentine. Cury, Neymar’s one-time representative, believes that a reunion could still be on the cards at Barcelona, not in Paris. He explained;
“I was in Barcelona for 10 years, I know every corner of the city, I’d be very happy to see Neymar go to Barcelona. Neymar has an open door at Barcelona, their fans know he made a mistake and even he recognised it some time later. Two years ago, Neymar formally asked me to return to Barcelona. We tried and we were really close to getting him out of Paris. But, because of some details, it didn’t happen.”
“[Joan] Laporta is the only one who can bring them back together again. Messi won’t leave Barcelona – he decided that his history is in Barcelona and I’m very clear on that. Neymar will play with Messi again, but in Barcelona.”
This could come as shocking news to PSG who could not only miss out on Leo Messi’s signature, but could also lose star forward Neymar. That being said, this claim contradicts previous reports that Neymar is set to sign a new deal in Paris, so it remains to be seen if the two will reunite at Barcelona.
Also read: 10 Players who could break the €100 million barrier this summer