Barcelona have reportedly ruled out the possibility of selling left-back Jordi Alba this summer amid speculation he could be exchanged for Atletico Madrid defender Theo Hernandez.
Hernandez—on loan at Alaves—has been linked with a swap deal that would see him move to the Camp Nou in Alba's place, but Spanish daily Sport reported that won't be the case.
Per the report, Alba has been described as "not for sale" despite dropping to manager Luis Enrique's bench at times during the second half of the season.
However, the Spaniard has demonstrated some impressive form of late, leaving UEFA.com's Richard Martin to describe his incredulity the left-back was ever dropped in the first place:
El Transistor, a show broadcast on Spanish radio station Onda Cero, recently reported Barca had already beaten transfer rivals Real Madrid to Hernandez's signing, with Alba alleged to be moving to Atleti on loan, per Sport.
However, the presence of Brazil international Flipe Luis is reason enough to believe Los Rojiblancos aren't panicking to strengthen at left-back, as ESPN FC's Dermot Corrigan recently hailed the incumbent's quality:
Atletico manager Diego Simeone also may not be content with the idea of losing his 19-year-old prospect in return for a loan player—plus any cash sum to go along with him—making the deal seem an unlikely one.
It's also a factor that Hernandez's older brother Lucas, 21, is already emerging at the Vicente Calderon, and he may feel he stands a strong chance of doing the same in the seasons to come.
The teenager is contracted to Atletico until the summer of 2021 and will return to Spain's capital a more mature asset this June, having made 34 first-team appearances thus far during his loan spell with Alaves.
For now, Barcelona have their hands on a more readily equipped resource in the shape of Spain national team regular Alba, who doesn't look likely to be involved in an exchange anytime soon.