PSG Transfer News: Julian Draxler Reportedly Welcomed Barcelona Rumours

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistSeptember 8, 2017

METZ, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 08:  Julian Draxler of Paris Saint-Germain Football Club or PSG battles for the ball with Cafu and Chris Philipps of Metz FC during the Ligue 1 match between Metz and Paris Saint Germain or PSG held at Stade Saint-Symphorien  on September 8, 2017 in Metz, France.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Paris Saint-Germain winger Julian Draxler was reportedly happy with the rumours linking him to Barcelona this summer, with reports from Catalonia saying he "dreamed" of joining the Blaugrana, who instead went after Philippe Coutinho.

Mundo Deportivo initially reported on Barcelona's interest in Draxler―even suggesting his agent had "offered" the player to the Catalans (h/t The Sun's Anthony Chapman).

The same newspaper now reports the Germany international was anxious to make the move (via the Daily Express' Jack Otway). His agent, Roger Wittmann, is even said to have twice traveled to Spain to facilitate the transfer.

(LtoR) Paris Saint-Germain's French defender Layvin Kurzawa, Paris Saint-Germain's German midfielder Julian Draxler, Paris Saint-Germain's French forward Kylian Mbappe, Paris Saint-Germain's Spanish defender Yuri Berchiche, Paris Saint-Germain's Italian m
FRANCK FIFE/Getty Images

Those claims go directly against Wittmann's comments at the time, as he told Sport 1 Draxler wanted to stay in Paris, and rumours of a possible exit were false (h/t ESPN FC's Jonathan Johnson):

"We are not interested in whether L'Equipe wrote something. There has been no change, it is not a topic.

"If somebody writes 'I have this information from Nasser Al-Khelaifi [PSG chairman and CEO],' then I will consider it and call the president to speak about Julian's situation.

"Once again, though, this is not the case. So, everything has been said."

PARIS, FRANCE - AUGUST 25: Julian Draxler of PSG during the French Ligue 1 match between Paris Saint Germain (PSG) and AS Saint-Etienne (ASSE) at Parc des Princes on August 25, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images)
Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

The constant stream of speculation started as soon as Neymar made his move to the French capital and only intensified when Kylian Mbappe started getting linked with the club. Les Parisiens already had a great attack, but with two new and expensive pieces, manager Unai Emery would have a surplus of options.

Emery tried to fit all of his toys into the starting XI on Friday against Metz, and Johnson didn't think it was logical:

Jonathan Johnson @Jon_LeGossip

Looking forward to seeing Neymar, Mbappe, Cavani & Draxler all start together. However exciting, a bit illogical from Emery IMO. #FCMPSG https://t.co/O3GnwVtcQH

The 23-year-old joined the Ligue 1 giants in January and made an immediate impact, continuing the fine form he showed in the Bundesliga. He remained relatively healthy―a welcome change from his days with Schalke 04 and VfL Wolfsburg―and carried his momentum into summer, when he dominated for Germany at the Confederations Cup.

Based on his great play, there were no reasons to believe PSG would even consider a sale. The club had to balance the books somewhat, however, and had enough attacking talent to sell someone who would fetch a good fee.

Instead, the club moved the likes of Serge Aurier and Grzegorz Krychowiak, and Draxler stayed. The fact he started Friday's match indicates Emery has big plans for the German and could be bad news for Lucas Moura and Angel Di Maria.


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