Barcelona Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of March 31
Barcelona find themselves right back in the title hunt after three wins in a week.
From being completely down and out, Tata Martino has masterminded a mini-revival and optimism again surrounds the Catalan club.
Players were being linked with the club, but in an astonishing twist on Wednesday morning, governing body FIFA have banned the club from any transfer activity.
It comes in the wake of the club breaking the rules on signing international players under the age of 18.
—Last update: Wednesday April 2—
FIFA Hand Barcelona Transfer Ban!
It will come as a bitter blow to the club who were known to be keen to strengthen in a number of areas over the summer period.
The report states:
Spanish champions Barcelona have been given a 14-month transfer ban by Fifa for breaking rules on signing international players under 18.
The Catalan club cannot buy or sell players until the summer of 2015 after the world governing body imposed a transfer ban for the next two windows.
They have also been fined 450,000 Swiss Francs (£305,000).
Fifa has also sanctioned the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) for the same breaches.
The RFEF has been given a fine of 500,000 Swiss Francs (£340,000) and told to "regularise [its] regulatory framework and existing system concerning the international transfer of minors in football" within a year.
Although Alves has a £30 million buyout clause, Barca are keen to secure funds for their stadium rebuilding project.
At 30-years-old, Barca might now decide this summer is the time to cash in.
Javier Mascherano looks like he will be making the move to Napoli in the summer.
One of the most sought after midfielders in European football, Borussia Dortmund's Ilkay Gundogan has been nursing a back complaint since August, but he is now on the mend.
It appears that Barcelona have risen to the head of the queue for his signature.
According to Ben Jefferson of the Daily Express, Barca's club doctor, Richard Pruna, was not at the hospital when Victor Valdes injured his cruciate ligament because he was in Germany speaking with Gundogan.
This has raised the possibility that the player will make Camp Nou his next destination rather than Old Trafford, with Manchester United's David Moyes also known to be keen.
With Carles Puyol hanging up his Blaugrana boots at the end of the season, securing a high-quality central defender is an absolute priority for Barcelona.
Available for around the €18 million mark, the player is just the sort of defender to replace Puyol.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!