Barcelona ‘plan seven exits’, including De Jong after Bayern defeat
Barcelona are planning as many as seven departures, including Manchester United and Chelsea target Frenkie de Jong, according to reports. Xavi’s side were beaten 3-0 by Bayern Munich in the Champions League on Wednesday night, with a Europa League place now beckoning. And with the La Liga giants needing to balance their finances, it looks like an exodus could happen this winter.
Barcelona had come to their match with Bayern knowing that they had already been consigned to play in the Europa League.
And things got worse for Xavi’s men on a punishing night at the Camp Nou, with goals from Sadio Mane, Eric Choupo-Moting and Benjamin Pavard giving the three points to Julian Nagelsmann’s men.
It was a chaotic night for Barcelona, who did not imagine suffering such an early exit when they squandered money so lavishly in the summer.
Now, according to SportThe Catalan titans are planning up to seven starts this winter as they seek to balance their finances and review their squad.
One player who will be able to leave is De Jong, who was linked with Manchester United and Chelsea in the summer.
United agreed a fee with Barcelona for the Dutch international, believed to be worth a total of £72m, only to switch their focus to Casemiro when it became clear de Jong was not interested in coming.
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However, with the player likely to be available in January, United and Chelsea can now capitalize on their situation.
Barcelona know they could charge a hefty fee for the midfielder, who has been in a state of high alert since his arrival from Ajax in 2019.
So it seems that De Jong’s days at the club are numbered, especially considering how he has struggled to play regularly this term.
Barcelona are set to part with Memphis Depay, with injuries hampering him this term, while veterans Jordi Alba and Gerard Pique have also been deemed surplus to requirements.
Sergio Busquets is set to walk away for free at the end of the season, having spent his entire career at the club so far.
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And young duo Pablo Torre and Iñaki Peña could go on loan, with Barcelona preferring the duo to spend more time in La Liga so they can get used to regular first-team football.
It seems that it is going to be a winter of changes in Catalonia.
And Xavi is aware that results need to improve if he is to remain Barcelona manager, especially given the amount of support he received in the summer.
While Xavi has been criticized for his problems on the Barcelona bench, however, Thierry Henry feels the club would have erupted “like a volcano” without his former teammate at the helm.
“Look at the end of the day, results matter, we’ve seen that with Steven Gerrard,” he said.
“The problem with Barcelona is that you don’t have time.
“But yes, let me tell you that if he was another manager right now at Barcelona, dealing with what is going on, he would have been more of a volcano than he is… the volcano would have erupted. But since he’s Xavi, he’s fine”.
And he added: “They are second in the league. We all know [Robert] Lewandowski should have marked Bayern but it’s not his [Xavi] fault that Lewandowski missed three times and it is not his fault if they did not call the penalty [Denzel] Dumfries, but you are the manager of Barcelona and you are going to be judged.
Barça has opted for the Champions League and needs that money for what it did in the summer.
Xavi himself, for his part, addressed the defeat against Bayern saying: “Today we didn’t reach their level, they were better.
“In Munich it was us, but today they were better, more intense.
“The elimination affected us psychologically.
“Tomorrow we train and think about the League.
“There were a lot of expectations, we had a difficult group.
“Everything possible happened to us. It has been very cruel. Today we did not compete well”.
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