Barcelona Make Important Ousmane Dembele Decision Following Contract Standoff

Ousmane Dembele
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Barcelona, who face Athletic Bilbao on Thursday night, have announced that Ousmane Dembele would not be part of the squad for this game. The winger’s deal is up at the end of the season, allowing him to discuss pre-contracts with clubs outside of Spain.

Barcelona Axe Ousmane Dembele From Squad Following Contract Standoff

Xavi Confirms That Ousmane Dembele Should ‘Sign-or-leave’

Ousmane Dembele, 24, has been playing for the Catalonian club since 2017. He joined from Borussia Dortmund for a fee of €140 million, the second most expensive transfer ever at the time. His career at Barcelona has been hampered by repeated injuries & disciplinary issues, affecting his performance on the pitch.

Despite his struggles, he is one of the best wingers in the world due to his pace, skill and excellent dribbling. Barcelona coach Xavi expressed his desire to extend Dembele’s contract, however, with the club’s financial situation less than healthy, a deal has become complicated. Dembele’s demands are reportedly much higher than Barcelona are willing to offer, meaning a deal was always going to be challenging.

As reported by Fabrizio Romano, Xavi stated earlier this week: “The message is clear. Ousmane Dembélé has to sign a new contract or we find a way to sell him in January. No other way.” Following days of negotiations, Barça’s Director of Football, Mateu Alemany, announced: “It’s clear that Dembélé does not want to continue with Barcelona. He doesn’t want to be part of our project.”

“We told Dembélé he has to leave immediately. We expect Ousmane to be sold before Jan 31”, states Alemany.

Hours before the quotes were made public, Barcelona announced their squad list for their match vs Athletic Bilbao. To the surprise of many Barcelona fans, Ousmane Dembele was not on the list.

What Next For Ousmane Dembele?

Following Barcelona’s decision, Ousmane Dembele is set to leave this January transfer window. A variety of clubs have shown interest, however, no offers have yet been made. Newcastle United reportedly approached the French winger weeks ago.

The Magpies have a war chest of cash to spend following their Saudi Arabian takeover. They have already splashed the cash on Kieran Trippier & Chris Wood.

Ousmane Dembele to Newcastle would make sense as they are one of few clubs that can afford the player’s expensive contract demands. The move would also benefit the club as they seek to improve their attacking depth and avoid relegation from the Premier League.

Despite having six months remaining on his contract, Ousmane Dembele has been asked to leave Barcelona this month, meaning a transfer fee would be required by potential suitors. The decision has been criticized by the player’s agent who commented on the matter: “Barça are losing Dembélé on their own. They cannot use the threat that Dembélé will spend six months without playing if he does not renew now. It’s a kind of pressure that doesn’t work against people like us.”


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