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Manchester City ready to pay the release clause of Barcelona defensive target

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Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

Apart from their desire to sign a striker, Barcelona’s second most important mission in the summer transfer window is to reinforce the centre-back position. The club have been linked with a plethora of names, including some free agents in Antonio Rudiger, Matthias Ginter, and Andreas Christensen.

Earlier in the summer, the Catalans had a serious interest in Sevilla’s centre-back Jules Kounde. Xavi was said to be a big fan, with the Frenchman one of the top names on his wishlist.

According to reports from El Nacional, Pep Guardiola has reactivated his interest in the Sevilla defender and is willing to match the release clause. This news is surprising, to say the least, as Manchester City already have three world-class centre-backs in their ranks in Ruben Dias, John Stones, and Aymeric Laporte.

Last summer, Chelsea were very close to signing the protege. However, his high release clause set at €80 million was the factor that made the London based side hesitate and miss out on his signing.

The other big team competing for his signing is Real Madrid. Carlo Ancelloti is said to have requested a defensive addition to Florentino Perez, and Kounde is a player Los Blancos admire. However, the player is said to prefer a move to Guardiola’s team over the offer from Madrid.

Kounde has started all 17 of Sevilla’s league games this season, maintaining eight clean sheets in the process. He averages three clearances and a tackle in every game and is a key pillar in Sevilla’s spectacular season in La Liga.

Barcelona, meanwhile, seem to have their hearts set on Matthijs de Ligt. The Dutchman, however, carries a €100 million release clause. That is far beyond what Joan Laport and co. can shell out for a non-priority position at the moment.

The primary objective for the summer is to close the signing of Erling Haaland, who could be available on a €75 million release clause. Barcelona will need to shell out a fortune in commission and bonuses to push the signing across the finish line.

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  1. Steve johnson

    15/01/2022 at 00:29

    Lets assume Haaland does great at Barca like Lewantowski at Batpyern. Great. So what? DoesLaporta and Xavi think that tge current team including Haaland plus say 2 good new players compete with city, bayern, psg, chelsea? Nonsenses it will take at least Haaland plus 2 plus 2 or 3 more befire rgat happens.

    Now lets asume that Haaland does like Dembele or Pulisic or Mikhitarian or even Aubameyang. After paying around 140 for the transfer and Rayolas commission and with a salary of 30 million per year, Haaland may end up beeing a much bigger disaster!! than Griezzmann or Coutinho or Dembele.

    Instead of spending 140 million on one player and 30 million per year on one player salaries, spread this and buy 2 or 3 good players in their prime and 1 or 2 young prospects instead. Gamble the future of the club on 2 or 3 out of those 4 or 5 players beeing a success, that is hedging your chances.
    Instead Laporta is behaving like a megalomaniac gammbler, persuing Haaland and gambling the clubs future on one player.

    • Meh

      16/01/2022 at 10:00

      They tried what you’re suggesting with Malcolm, Arthur, Braithwaite, Luuk de Jong and so on. It did not work

      • Steve johnson

        17/01/2022 at 10:22

        They tried with a scouting and transfer decission making department that since 2017 has produced no transfer sucesses at all. One would assume that by now there is a different scouting and transfer decission making department that works much better. And even if it does not, it is probably better to have 2 x Braithwait or Arthour transfers or Luuk loan failures than 2 x Coutinho or Dembele failures.