Pedri, Barcelona Agree to New Contract Through 2026; Includes $1.16B Release Clause

Erin WalshOctober 14, 2021

LISBON, PORTUGAL - SEPTEMBER 29: Pedri of FC Barcelona looks on during the UEFA Champions League group E match between SL Benfica and FC Barcelona at Estadio da Luz on September 29, 2021 in Lisbon, Portugal. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
David Ramos/Getty Images

Barcelona midfielder Pedri has signed a new contract through 2026 with a release clause of €1 billion ($1.16 billion), the club announced Thursday. 

The 18-year-old's previous deal was set to expire at the end of the season. According to ESPN's Sam Marsden and Moises Llorens, Barcelona made signing Pedri to a new contract a priority. 

FC Barcelona @FCBarcelona

💎 <a href="https://twitter.com/Pedri?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Pedri</a> to sign new contract this Friday <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DreamTeen?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#DreamTeen</a>

Pedri began his professional career with Las Palmas when he was just 16 years old. He joined Barcelona in early 2020 for €5 million and immediately joined Barca's senior squad.

The highly talented youngster made 52 appearances during his debut season with the Blaugrana in 2020-21. He scored four goals and was promoted to Spain's senior international team in March. 

Pedri was also included in Luis Enrique's team for Euro 2020 and won the Young Player of the Tournament prize. In addition, he played for Spain at the Tokyo Olympics, helping the country reach the gold-medal match against Brazil, a 2-1 loss. 

Pedri's stock has risen mightily since he joined Camp Nou, and there was talk he could be poached from Barca because of the club's ongoing financial crisis. German giants Bayern Munich were among the clubs with interest in the Spaniard, per Sport's Toni Juanmarti. 

However, Barcelona had no intention of parting ways with Pedri after watching club legend Lionel Messi depart for Paris Saint-Germain. Antoine Griezmann also left for Atletico Madrid following a three-year stint at Camp Nou. 

With Pedri locked up, Barcelona can focus on the future. The club was reportedly looking to replace Ronald Koeman, but president Joan Laporta said earlier this month that the coach's job was safe. 

However, ESPN reported that Koeman was kept on because of the lack of credible alternatives available. If a more intriguing boss becomes accessible, Koeman could be out. 

Barcelona has struggled early this season, sitting ninth in La Liga with a 3-3-1 record. The club has not won a league match since a 3-0 victory over Levante on September 26.