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Barcelona’s breakout star was rejected by Ajax in January – report

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In a massive revelation made by Luis Rojo while writing for Spanish publication MARCA, it’s been confirmed that Ajax rejected Barcelona’s approach of a player plus cash deal for their then left-back Nicolas Tagliafico, who now plies his trade with Olympique de Lyon, in January.

Interestingly enough, the player in question was this year’s breakout star Alejandro Balde. 

As it turns out, the 18-year-old left-back, who made his Barcelona debut against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League in September 2021, was deemed uninteresting as the Dutch club decided to let go of the opportunity.

Barcelona’s interest in Tagliafico is no longer a secret. Back in January when Jordi Alba was Blaugrana’s only viable left-back, their search took them to Amsterdam, with Tagliafico more than willing to make a move.

The only issue at that time were the finances, something which Barcelona were struggling to manage. The aforementioned outlet claims Ajax had valued the Argentine between €8-10 million. For Barcelona, they didn’t want to spend that much on a player who was willing to travel in the first place.

So what the management did in order to lower the price was to include one player in the operation.

The team had several options to consider given the size of the roster, but one name that popped out was of Balde since being a left-back, he would have been an ideal replacement for the Eredivisie side.

Destiny, however, had something else planned, as Ajax did not see Balde as an interesting proposition. Fast forward to date and the 18-year-old has now made the left-back spot his own, having appeared in five of the six La Liga games for his team.

In these five outings, Balde has provided three assists while clocking an impressive 386 minutes, meaning that he is averaging almost 80 minutes per game. All this despite Alba’s presence and the arrival of Marcos Alonso from Chelsea.

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