Barcelona have set this summer’s Euro 2020 tournament as a deadline to resolve the future of Ousmane Dembélé.
As reported by Catalan daily Sport, Barça will offer the French winger a contract extension of three years that the player must sign before the European Championships. If there is no agreement by that stage, the club will listen to offers for the player, whose current contract ends on June 30, 2022. For the new Joan Laporta board, Dembélé’s continuity is an important priority, but it is also heavily concerned about losing him on a free transfer next summer, which is why it has set this deadline.
Dembélé arrived at Camp Nou four seasons ago to cover Neymar’s departure for Paris Saint-Germain, with Barcelona paying Borussia Dortmund €105 million plus another €40 million in variables. On account of a stream of injuries that have plagued him since his arrival, the 23-year-old forward has not been able to live up to expectations. Although, this season he has emerged as a key player for coach Ronald Koeman, a situation which has also prompted his return to the French national team.
Juventus, Man United and PSG eyeing Dembélé
His impressive campaign this season has not gone unnoticed by European giants, including Juventus and Manchester United, the latter of which made a very serious approach to sign him last summer. In France, there is also speculation that Dembélé could be the target for PSG in the event that Neymar fails to agree a new deal at Parc des Princes.
Barça will be reluctant to sell to him. Both Koeman and Laporta consider him a player with great potential. But the big issue remains that his contract expires next year, meaning there is the danger that he could leave the club free of charge. And given Barcelona’s precarious financial situation, the club does not have luxury of letting one of its few footballers with a big market value leave on a free. Should they decide to sell this summer, Dembélé’s fee would go a significant way in alleviating the club’s coffers
Dembélé debate begins at Barcelona
The situation has sparked a debate at Barcelona centered around the value of keeping him at a sporting level and the value of selling from a financial perspective. But whatever the scenario, the decision will not be delayed beyond the Euros this summer.
If the Frenchman does not accept Barça’s renewal offer before the start of the tournament, the club will prioritize his sale amid for fear of losing him for free next year.