Competition Focus

FC Barcelona Offered Rising Star For Cut Fee

FC Barcelona has been offered a rising La Liga star for a cut fee according to Mundo Deportivo, which cited anonymous sources.

Assane Diao is considered one of the main pearls of the Real Betis academy in recent years, and made his first team debut under Manuel Pellegrini.

An impressive 28 games in all competitions followed for the 18-year-old, who also managed four senior goals in 2023/2024.

Back in November, transfer market experts Sport Witness reported that Premier League giants Newcastle United, Liverpool, and Chelsea were all moving to sign the teenager who was born in Senegal but boasts a Spanish passport.

The same outlet said that Betis was currently working for Diao to sign a new contract, because his current release clause is “only” $32.1 million (€30 million).

Over at Mundo Deportivo, however, the Catalan newspaper says that the clause is worth half of this sum though Betis would indeed like Diao to agree new terms that would see the amount doubled to €30 million.

That Diao has been offered to Barca has also been reported on by Gerard Romero and his Jijantes outlet, who also added that the Blaugrana’s Sporting Director Deco is interested in Belgian right winger Johan Bakayoko currently playing his trade for PSV Eindhoven in the Dutch Eredivisie.

Diao is also a winger, but operates on the left flank which has been identified as an area of the pitch where Barca needs reinforcements.

In 2023/2024 under Xavi Hernandez, both Ferran Torres and Joao Felix failed to nail down the position for themselves.

Towards the back end of the season, the now-dismissed Xavi opted for right winger Raphinha to man the vacancy while Lamine Yamal flew up and down the opposite channel.

All the players listed save for Lamine now have to impress Xavi’s successor Hansi Flick, and might face competition from Diao if Barca presses ahead with his potential purchase.

This summer, Diao is almost certain to represent Spain’s U19 team at the European Championship in Northern Ireland from July 15 to 28 meaning he could miss at least a fortnight of preseason whether that is with Betis or new employers.

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