The Spanish league is about to start, but FC Barcelona seems anything but ready for the new season. Players are being linked to the club every day, but so far the counter for purchases by coach Ronald Koeman is zero.
The names of two Dutch footballers do appear regularly on the front pages of the Spanish sports newspapers. Memphis Depay and Georginio Wijnaldum are constantly mentioned as new players of Barcelona.
Usually well-informed Spanish media cant stop talking about them. Websites and newspapers bulge with stories about the Dutch.
But the renowned media, including LÉquipe (France), BBC Sport (England) and Bild (Germany), also report on Koemans plans. What is the state of affairs at the Catalan club?
Depay knows there is interest
Starting with Depay. Koeman has informed Luis Suárez that he may leave, so the position of striker is vacant. And then the link with Depay, who wants to leave Olympique Lyonnais, is quickly made.
In the period that Koeman was at the helm of the Dutch Team, Depay has become the big man. The two have great confidence in each other. After the lost international against Italy (0-1) last Monday, Depay said he knows there is interest from Barcelona.
The Italian sports journalist Fabrizio Romano has been a phenomenon on Twitter for years with the latest transfer news. He has 1.6 million followers and works for Sky Italia, British The Guardian and American CBS, among others.
Depay has a personal agreement with Barcelona. The contract is almost ready, says Romano by phone. Depay itself is eager and its up to the clubs now. Theyre in contact, but theres no official offer yet.
Lyon has indeed let us know that no official offer has been made on Depay yet. If a 26-year-old striker only has a one-year contract and Barcelona follows him, Memphis is in a strong position. If there is an offer, we will think about it, said former player and current Lyon director Juninho Pernambucano.
It suddenly remains quiet around Wijnaldum
And then Wijnaldum. His contract with Liverpool expires after this season and, according to Spanish media, the midfielder himself was already out last week. He would have an agreement with Barça on a three-year contract.
Wijnaldum was asked about Barcelonas interest at a press conference of the Dutch national team last week. He kept himself on the field:
Since then it remained awfully quiet. According to the English Sky Sports, Wijnaldums departure is not at all certain and the Dutchman would like to extend his one-year contract with Liverpool. It is written that he had a conversation about this with manager Jürgen Klopp on Wednesday.
At Koeman, Wijnaldum is in good shape because of his dynamism, walking ability and zest for work. Its no coincidence that the midfielder was given an important role by Koeman. Salient detail: Barcelona fans would prefer to see another midfielder play in Camp Nou, namely Thiago Alcántara
Last month Thiago Alcántara won the Champions League with Bayern Munich, but in the meantime he has announced that he wants to leave the German club. According to the German Bild, Barcelona has already contacted the agent of the 29-year-old Spaniard, who was trained by Barça.
By the way, Liverpool would also be interested in Thiago. The English would see him as a good successor for… Wijnaldum. So, should he leave.
Suárez laughs at fake news
So much for possible incoming transfers. Koeman also has to say goodbye to players on the other side. This has already happened to Ivan Rakitic, who has returned to Seville. Also midfielder Arturo Vidal may leave.
Suárez also seems to be waiting for a transfer. There was an allusion to a return to Ajax, but such a stunt is (presumably) too much for the Amsterdammers in financial terms. A transfer to Juventus has been in the air for days.
In the meantime, the Uruguayan is just standing on the training field near Barcelona and lets Instagram know hes laughing at all the fake news thats coming out about him.
In short: a lot has already happened and there is still a lot to be done in Barcelona. Not to mention Lionel Messi, who is back on the training field with his buddy Suárez.
A big problem for Koeman: there is no money in the club greenhouse. There will have to be sold first, before Wijnaldum and/or Depay can be attracted. To be continued without a doubt.