Barcelona Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of July 15
Barcelona take on Lechia Gdansk tomorrow in the first pre-season friendly of the 2013/14 season.
More and more defensive targets are having to be scrubbed from Barca's shopping list as either their parent clubs refuse to sell or the player transfers to another club, as in the case of Marquinhos.
Barcelona look forward to a hectic pre-season schedule still unsure of their first choice defensive line up, and their pursuit of Thiago Silva has met with some interesting resistance from PSG.
LAST UPDATE: FRIDAY 17 JULY
What on earth is Lionel Messi doing in this list you may ask?! Lucas Brown of Sky Sports tells the story.
Whilst the news coming out of Paris St. Germain at this stage can be taken with the proverbial pinch of salt, there are serious overtones to a statement made by PSG President Sheikh Nasser Al-Khelaifi.
Extremely unhappy at Barcelona's continued pursuit of his captain Thiago Silva, Al-Khelaifi told ActuSports.fr "If Barca pay the buy-out clause of Thiago Silva then I will meet Messi's buy-out clause."
Messi has always maintained that he is completely happy and settled at Barca however nobody has ever come close to orchestrating a move away—because of his astronomical €250 million buyout clause—and affording him personal terms to dwarf any other in world football.
It could get interesting if that carrot were ever dangled. Barcelona have been warned.
It seems that, far from PSG losing a Brazilian defender, that they will be gaining one in the shape of Marquinhos.
It is understood that the player has already agreed personal terms and a deal is expected to be concluded swiftly.
The news will disappoint Barcelona and Manchester United, both of whom had submitted bids for the player according to the players representative Roberto Calenda.
Yet another Brazilian centre back that Barcelona appear to have lost out on is David Luiz.
Luiz has been another on Tito Vilanova's radar for some considerable time but there is no chance of him moving to Barcelona now according to The Sun.
The English newspaper report Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho as telling reporters that there is “No chance. No chance” of either Luiz or Juan Mata leaving the club in this transfer window.
With more defensive targets falling by the wayside, Barcelona are being forced to pick from an ever-decreasing pool of talent.
Tito Vilanova is a fan of Agger's technical ability and a low transfer fee of £16m will satisfy Barca's money men.
Barcelona have already made it clear that Cesc Fabregas is going nowhere this summer.
George Ankers of Goal.com reports Wenger as saying:
At the moment, Fabregas has decided to stay one more year at Barcelona.
We have the clause in the contract so we would be on alert but, at the moment, that’s not something we're after.
Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova has told reporters that Cesc Fabregas is going nowhere.
Alex Hankin of the Daily Mirror reports that Barcelona are not interested in selling the player and furthermore, the player himself doesn't want to leave.
Vilanova told a press conference:
I'm aware there have been offers.
I had a conversation with him [Cesc Fabregas] and he told me that he wanted to continue here and that he didn't want to go to another big club.
He wants to succeed here.
Words that will disappoint new Manchester United manager David Moyes who is desperate for a stellar signing after missing out on Fabregas' team mate Thiago Alcantara.
Despite news linking Thiago Silva with a move to Barcelona should Marquinhos arrive at PSG, both the owner of the club and the player himself have categorically denied he will be swapping France for Spain.
Shane Callaghan of Goal.com notes that PSG president Nasser Al-Khelafi is in no mood to sell his captain and one of his star players:
Thiago will not leave for Barcelona. He has a four-year contract left.
He will line up for us against Bordeaux for the Trophee des Champions on August 3. So he will definitely be with us.
But we, on the other hand, are following some Barca players.
Joe Wright, also of Goal.com tells of a statement issued by Silva through his advisors:
I saw the news that I would travel to a meeting with the president and new coach of PSG to discuss a possible transfer.
That will not happen, because I will complete my contract I have with the club, as I feel I have always done.
After losing out on Thiago Alcantara, David Moyes has turned his attention to another Barcelona midfielder.
According to Simon Johnson of the London Evening Standard, Manchester United have today placed a £26 million bid for the player. However, if Barcelona are willing to sell and the player himself wants to move, United will face stiff competition from former club Arsenal.
The Gunners have the first option to buy Fabregas, having inserted a clause as part of the deal that took him to Camp Nou.
According to TodoMercado (h/t Football Espana), Barcelona are keeping an eye on French international attacking midfielder Mathieu Valbuena.
The player is currently at French Ligue 1 side Marseille, and agent Christophe Hutteau has said that his client is happy in France for the time being.
I spoke to Zubizarreta about Mathieu some time ago and he told me his coaching staff consider him a very good player, someone they all like.
He also told me that a number of attacking players are going to leave the club, so there could be a new approach.
However, at the moment Mathieu is very happy in Marseille.
It had been reported over the weekend in the Brazilian media (h/t Eurosport) that Brazilian Marquinhos was "not very far away" from a transfer to French champions PSG.
However, according to Football Italia, the player now prefers a move to Barcelona rather than teaming up with countryman Thiago Silva in Paris.
AS Roma accepted a €30 million bid from PSG, but rejected Barcelona's €25 million offer.
If Barcelona were to raise their initial offer, it would appear they will secure themselves the central defender that they are so desperate to acquire.
Jonathan Dos Santos
Despite only a handful of appearances for Barcelona over the last few years, Jonathan Dos Santos has been quite happy to bide his time at Camp Nou until the right opportunity came along.
Spanish paper AS (h/t InsideSpanishFootball) are reporting that such an opportunity may be just around the corner.
If the player is to move, he would prefer to leave on a permanent deal. The report suggests Dos Santos finds Sociedad an attractive option, yet Barcelona bizarrely would prefer to loan him rather than sell—a very strange decision given that they would appear to have no intention of playing him any time soon.
Anderlecht have also made a firm enquiry for the player and other La Liga sides are interested.
It remains to be seen if Champions League football and Sociedad's aggressive pursuit of the player are enough to convince him to move.
Although Fabregas himself has rubbished the idea of a move previously, doubts remain as to his role within the Barca first team.
Any potential deal should be easy to complete, as Arsenal secured a £25 million first-option clause as part of the transfer.
Arsene Wenger has been linked with a number of high-profile purchases this summer, none of which have yet been completed.
The transfer of Fabregas would go some way to alleviating the gloom enveloping the Emirates because of a lack of incoming personnel.
Ivanovic was allegedly an early summer target for Tito Vilanova, but the player has been assured of his immediate future in London by Blues boss Jose Mourinho.
Clearly the defender was looking forward to the prospect of working with the former Real Madrid boss. He said:
We had our first meeting with Mourinho. He looks very impressive and that’s pleasing.
With him Chelsea will act as a team, but we will also improve individually.
Mourinho is very important for the club and for the fans.
Pratt also quotes a source close to the player:
All being well, Branislav would like to be a Chelsea player for the remainder of his playing days at the highest level.
He is definitely staying at Chelsea. He loves Mourinho’s style and is keen to play for the new coach.
He has been told that he does have a future at the club and, while there was the possibility of him going to Barcelona, he is happier staying in London.