Despite FC Barcelona being in dire financial straits and desperately trying to sell TV rights to balance the books they have still been actively trying to convince players to join them. Cesar Azpilicueta has been one of their priority targets over the summer with the 32-year-old Chelsea skipper agreeing on personal terms with the hope of signing a two-year deal with the club. The latest in this transfer saga according to Fabrizio Romano is that Barcelona are now preparing to make an official bid for the player.
According to Nizaar Kinsella of the Evening Standard, Chelsea could let the Spaniard go for as little as £7 million. The London club are bringing in new faces at full-back which may help ease the deal along.
Cesar Azpilicueta: Chelsea Captain Moves Closer to FC Barcelona Transfer
Chelsea Stalwart Nears Stamford Bridge Exit
Barcelona are preparing their official proposal for César Azpilicueta. Up to Chelsea soon, as they will complete new signings and then decide on the Spanish fullback. 🚨🇪🇸 #CFC
Barcelona have an agreement on personal terms with Apzi since months ago: 2 year deal with option.
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 14, 2022
The Chelsea captain has already made it clear to Thomas Tuchel and the new owners that he wishes to join FC Barcelona, and embark on a new chapter in his career. The Camp Nou hierarchy will be keen to get his asking price lowered as they attempt to seal this transfer and a deal for Leeds United winger Raphinha.
After losing Antonio Rudiger this summer, it will be a big blow to Tuchel to lose another player with exceptional leadership skills. However, the club are actively looking at strengthening in defensive areas, with talks ongoing with Manchester City for the transfer of Nathan Ake back to Stamford Bridge, with the club still also thought to be keen on Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt.
Azpilicueta entered the final year of his contract this past campaign, but despite the ownership unrest at the club, they activated a one-year extension for their captain.
Reports suggest he has been offered £11m a year before tax if he ultimately moves to FC Barcelona. His leadership and versatility will be missed at Chelsea as he can play anywhere across defence, excelling in the right-back position during his tenure in West London. He arrived at Stamford Bridge from French side Marseille in 2012 for a fee of £7 million, going on to make 476 appearances for the West London club, memorably captaining them to Champions League triumph in the 2020-21 season.
There’s a direct contact scheduled between Barcelona and Chelsea this week. Barça want to complete Cesar Azpilicueta deal as soon as possible, two year contract plus option for further season. 🔴🔵 #FCB
Marcos Alonso will be discussed too, he’s still hoping for Barça move. pic.twitter.com/TZLa54FiBq
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 7, 2022