Barcelona’s financial predicament is expected to have a big impact on their ability to do deals this summer. Transfer fees are unlikely to be afforded, meaning that free agents will be an important avenue over the next few months.
Several names have been linked in recent weeks, which some more plausible than others. Presently, Inigo Martinez and Ilkay Gundogan are the two that have stuck out, while a possible homecoming for Lionel Messi has been gaining traction.
Ultimately, departures could influence how and where Barcelona strengthen this summer. Specifically, when it comes to midfield, Sergio Busquets’ future could play a big role in the club’s transfer activity.
If Busquets decides to leave at the end of his own contract, which expires this summer, Barcelona may be forced to search for another midfielder on top of Gundogan, providing that the German international does sign on the dotted line.
Adrien Rabiot could be a plausible option for Barcelona. The Frenchman is out of contract at Juventus in a few months, and it remains to be seen whether he opts to renew. However, there is an opportunity for the clubs to take advantage of the situation, and Fichajes report that Barcelona are one of the sides reportedly interested.
Rabiot has undoubted quality, and he would add value to a relatively young Barcelona midfield – outwith Busquets – but is he something that is needed in Catalonia this summer?
Firstly, there is little doubt that Rabiot would be an excellent depth option. However, in the position that he usually occupies for Juventus, which is similar to ones that Pedri and Gavi play for Barcelona, it seems unwise to pursue a move for him.
He could certainly be a backup, but with the wages he’d likely be asking for, it’d be better to stick with a player for Pablo Torre in the first team instead of signing Rabiot.
Barcelona’s problem position, if Busquets goes, would obviously be at pivot. Gundogan can play there, although he isn’t as naturally as Xavi Hernandez and his coaching staff would like, but he could certainly do a job. However, their budget restrictions would likely hinder any changes of signing a long-term replacement for Busquets.
Barcelona will be desperate to keep Busquets for another season, and they look to consolidate, as well as allowing the club’s finances to improve over the next few years, which will then allow them to find a suitable replacement for the 34-year-old.
In terms of Rabiot, he is a very good player, but he is just not what Barcelona need in midfield, and with their finances struggling, they cannot afford to buy players they don’t require.
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