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Barcelona and Atletico Madrid in dispute over €60 million deal for forward

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Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images

Barcelona have their work cut out for themselves ahead of the summer transfer window, as they try to complete their project rebuild following a rather disastrous season that ended with no trophies and the sacking of Xavi as manager.

Hansi Flick has been hired as a replacement and would want to have a competitive squad if Barça want any shot at competing against Real Madrid, who have added Kylian Mbappe and Endrick to their Champions League-La Liga winning team.

One of the major positions of concern is the left-wing slot, which was contested between Raphinha, Joao Felix, Ferran Torres, and Fermin Lopez last season.

While Nico Williams seems to be their priority, the board is also pushing to retain the services of Felix, who is hugely appreciated by Joan Laporta.

The operation, however, is not easy, as Barcelona are financially stranded, and will likely not be able to match Atletico’s demand, who want to recoup most of the €125 million they spent on his services.

Atletico’s demands are clear

According to Mundo Deportivo, Atletico Marid are demanding €50 million for Felix’s services, but Barcelona will not be able to table that offer to the club, and are pushing for another loan.

What Barcelona do have in their favour, though, is that Felix has, on multiple occasions, publicly talked about his desire to continue with the Catalans.

As recently as yesterday, the Portuguese talked about his love for the club, saying, “I love Barça and I want to stay.”

“I am on loan and it’s not going to depend on me. I have always said that I love Barça, that it is the club of my childhood and I want to stay. It depends on many other things and we will see what can happen,” he added. 

Barcelona’s unclear agenda

Do Barcelona need Felix? (Photo by JORGE GUERRERO/AFP via Getty Images)

Felix had a largely underwhelming season at Barcelona, scoring just seven goals and giving three assists in 30 appearances in the league. However, it is clear that Barcelona want him to stay for more than just his performances.

Laporta has a long-standing relationship with his agent, Jorge Mendes, who helped push through the moves for both Felix and Joao Cancelo last summer. The transfer, therefore, is evidently politically motivated.

If Barcelona want any chance at competing with Madrid next season, and help Flick get the best out of his tactics, a move for Williams should be the priority.

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