FC Barcelona’s age-old interest in Bernardo Silva was once again activated this summer, with Xavi’s wishes to acquire a creative playmaking midfielder leading the club to tail the Manchester City ace for most of the transfer window.
However, as much as the Catalan giants hoped to see Bernardo don the Blaugrana jersey, it was almost always a pipedream that failed to transpire due to Manchester City’s high asking price and Barcelona’s delicate financial situation.
Eventually, the Portuguese midfield maestro ended up pledging his future at the Etihad Stadium until 2026 after penning an extension.
Barcelona’s interest was legitimate
Now, in an interview via SPORT, Bernardo Silva’s father, Paulo Silva, has confirmed that Barcelona were indeed interested in acquiring Bernardo Silva.
The 28-year-old’s father has revealed that the player was on the radar of many clubs, and Barça were one of the interested parties.
“There was continued interest from Barcelona, who year after year have wanted Bernardo in the squad,” he said.
“There was a proposal and an intention to buy from Saudi Arabia, which began in June. There was also a very strong approach, with a proposal and willingness on the part of PSG,” he added.
Paulo Silva’s words confirm the supposition that Joan Laporta and co. looked to comply with Xavi’s wishes by signing the treble-winner with Manchester City.
In fact, Barcelona were heavily interested in the previous summer as well. But as was the case last year, the Catalan giants’ frail finances proved too much of a hassle.
Reports in Spain have claimed that Bernardo’s new contract contains a meager €50 million release clause, implying Barça may once again evaluate another attempt.
However, Silva’s father stated that the possibility of returning to his boyhood club Benfica is on the cards in the future, saying:
“Year by year and step by step we will see what the opportunities are, we can’t make a decision three years down the line based on a hypothesis that may or may not happen. Obviously Bernardo is a Benfica fan and wants to come back to Benfica.
“Will it be in three years? I don’t think the decision to extend one more year with City is related to going to Benfica when he is 32. It could be a possibility, which is a strong possibility indeed, but I wouldn’t put it as a preparation for that.”