Barcelona Defender Marc Bartra Signs 3-Year Contract Extension

Tom SunderlandFeatured ColumnistJanuary 15, 2014

BARCELONA, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 23: Marc Bartra of FC Barcelona looks on during the warm up prior to the La Liga match between FC Barcelona and Granda CF at Camp Nou on November 23, 2013 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
David Ramos/Getty Images

Barcelona have announced that Marc Bartra has put pen to paper over a new deal at the Camp Nou, effectively ending any transfer speculation surrounding the defender's future.

The club announced, via their official Twitter account, that the new contract will run until the summer of 2017, while AS added that a €25 million buyout clause has been inserted:

Bartra's previous deal in Catalan country was set to expire at the end of the season, leading to a mound of speculation regarding La Blaugrana's willingness to sell the player this winter.

According to talkSPORT, Tottenham and Liverpool were among the Premier League parties interested in handing the centre-back more first-team opportunities but will have now been left disappointed.

NETANYA, ISRAEL - JUNE 15:  Marc Bartra of Spain controles the ball during the UEFA European U21 Championship Semi Final match between Spain and Norway at Netanya Stadium on June 15, 2013 in Netanya, Israel.  (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images)
Alex Grimm/Getty Images

Despite the former doubts over his situation at Barca, the player has always stayed resolute about his desire to remain at the club. When asked about his negotiations, Bartra is reported by AS (h/t ESPN FC's Dermot Corrigan) as saying: 

I am not getting into that. The most important thing for me is to play good games, to maintain my formthat would be good for the contract renewal and for many things in the future. I have never thought about leaving Barcelona. I hope to be a Barca defender for many more years.

I did not get many minutes at the start of the season, but I have been getting more. I am ambitious and want to play all the games I can, not just a few minutes here and there. In two months, things have changed, and for the better. [Coach Gerardo Martino] had no fear of putting me in when there were injuries. Being match-fit helps a lot. The better I am, the better it is for the team.

La Masia's most impressive products in recent years have mostly been in midfield and attack, but Bartra is one of the more prodigious defensive assets to have come out of the club's academy of late.

MADRID, SPAIN - JANUARY 11:  Coach Gerardo Tata Martino of FC Barcelona looks on from the bench prior to start the La Liga match between Club Atletico de Madrid and FC Barcelona at Vicente Calderon Stadium on January 11, 2014 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by
Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

The 23-year-old has received an encouraging amount of playing time under Gerardo Martino, making 11 La Liga appearances this term, per, eight of which have been as a part of the starting line-up.

Squawka also show that the player boasts a magnificent passing accuracy of 92 percent, showing that the Spanish giants' values most certainly aren't lost on their defensive players, either:

If there were any fears over Bartra's worth as a first-team player, the defender is swiftly proving his mettle in La Liga, and he made his debut for the Spanish national team two months ago in a friendly against Equatorial Guinea.

On top of that, this new deal will only serve to further vindicate the young star in his his journey to becoming a part of Barcelona's hierarchy—a host of Europe's elite missing out as a result.