The departure of Luis Suárez to Atlético Madrid has left Barcelona without their first-choice striker for the 2020/21 season. And yes, they still have both Antoine Griezmann and Martin Braithwaite but neither of them seems like Ronald Koeman’s preferred options for that role moving forward.
However, there’s been an interesting turn of events lately that could suddenly give the Catalans an unexpected alternative. According to Jose Alvarez from El Chiringuito TV, who’s reportedly the player’s close friend, Sergio Agüero would be willing to make a switch to the Camp Nou next season.
This might indeed be an interesting avenue for Barcelona to explore since the Argentine is free to negotiate with anyone from January onward, seeing how his Manchester City contract will soon expire. Of course, we know the Catalans are on the market for a new striker, although Koeman has his heart set on Memphis Depay.
Still, even if they were going to make an effort to sign the Olympique Lyon star, Depay is not an out-and-out striker nor a traditional no.9. Agüero, however, can definitely play that role more than just well.
Not to mention that Lionel Messi and Agüero are good friends and play in the national team together. For that reason, there is already chemistry between them which could continue at Barcelona as well. Man City’s star is keen on playing alongside his countryman next season and the ball seems to be in the Catalans’ court right now.
Of course, Agüero is not exactly a long-term option, seeing how we’re talking about a 32-year-old player, but if they can get him for free, maybe it wouldn’t be such a bad idea after all. On the other hand, what was the point of getting rid of Suárez if they’re just going to replace him with another veteran striker?
A big decision lies ahead of the Azulgranas now and it will be up to Koeman to pull the trigger.
La Liga chief Javier Tebas talks summer transfers and fan return to stadiums
In a conference held by ADEA Forum (Association of managers and executives of Aragon) in Zaragoza, Javier Tebas spoke on a wide range of topics surrounding La Liga.
Mostly, the La Liga president spoke regarding the league’s bounce back from the pandemic and some potential plans for the league to restore public crowds. He also discussed the losses incurred, the summer transfers, among other things.
The Condition of La Liga
Tebas started the conference by claiming that the situation for the Spanish league is comparatively better than other leagues.
Speaking on this, he said, “The situation is worrying, but not so much. I think that of this pandemic the Spanish League is the one that is going to turn out less badly compared to the others.”
He then spoke about the losses incurred in Spanish football, with the net loss amounting to €1 billion by the 30th of September.
On the losses, Tebas said, “Of this billion, 750 have been financed by banks or investment funds, the latter the majority based in London, and the rest have been done by the clubs pulling their cash.”
Additionally, he mentioned that it was big clubs that were affected stronger than the smaller clubs, due to the huge loss of income from the lack of crowds, among other profitable economic activities that clubs such as Real Madrid and Barcelona enjoy above others.
A return for crowds to stadiums
When speaking on a return of crowds to stadiums, the La Liga chief seemed tremendously confident in their ability to host crowds as early as tomorrow. He claimed that they would have to run at between 20% to 30% capacity; nonetheless, the Spaniard was confident that teams would be more than capable of hosting crowds very soon.
Speaking on the same, he said, “There is a working group for the return [of fans] to the stadiums. I hope that in the last league games we can see the public in a proportional amount.”
Upcoming transfer window
Speaking on the summer transfer window, the president claimed that there will indeed be a lower amount of transfers as there were in the previous window. Tebas said, “They have already been lower in winter. There may be occasional and exceptional operations, but globally it will decrease. There will be exchanges of players. It’s going to be lower than last year.”
Accordingly, clubs are going to have to dig into their academy reserves more and more as the global and financial situations amend over time.