Player Features

FC Barcelona Star Rejects Saudi Offer, Brings Catalans Financial Woes

An FC Barcelona star rejected a big money offer from Saudi Arabia which could cause the Catalans a financial headache next season according to Mundo Deportivo, which cited anonymous sources.

Clement Lenglet has been on Barca’s books since 2018, and played at Camp Nou for four seasons until former head coach Xavi Hernandez decided he didn’t want the Frenchman in his squad.

This has resulted in back-to-back loans in the Premier League, first at Tottenhan Hotspur in 2022/2023, and unlikely Champions League qualifiers Aston Villa last term.

Neither English outfit has decided to make Lenglet’s temporary assignment permanent, however, much to the misfortune of Barca – which desperately needs to make player sales before the end of the financial year on June 30 if it is to return to the 1:1 rule under Financial Fair Play limits and make reinforcements for the start of the Hansi Flick era in 2024/2025.

That’s not to say there hasn’t been interest in the ex-France international elsewhere, however.

With one-time Barca Sporting Director Ramon Planes at the wheel, Saudi Pro League giants Al-Ittihad have been approaching Spanish center backs.

In recent weeks, MARCA reported that the team which boasts Karim Benzema up front had also managed to lure another Real Madrid legend in Los Blancos skipper Nacho.

The veteran’s contract at the Bernabeu expires on June 30, but with nine days to spare, there still hasn’t been anything concrete announced from any of the parties involved.

According to Mundo Deportivo, Planes has also approached Lenglet, but received a ‘no’ from the 29-year-old who wants to continue playing in the European elite.

Unless Lenglet can find a new suitor, a financial headache is on the near horizon for Planes’ Barca counterpart Deco and President Joan Laporta.

Next season, Lenglet is set to earn an astounding $17 million (€16 million) thanks to money that was deferred during the pandemic on the watch of Laporta’s predecessor Josep Bartomeu.

This makes him one of the highest paid members of the squad in the same ballpark as Frenkie de Jong and Robert Lewandowski, which is not ideal considering the “overbooking” of central defenders and the lack of need Flick will have for Lenglet.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button