According to latest reports coming in from CAT Radio, Barcelona winger Ousmane Dembele does not wish to extend his contract with the club. In turn, Barcelona now plan to list the player on the market in order to avoid his departure on a free transfer if an agreement is not reached.
After a lot of optimism seemed to be floating around with regards to the Frenchman’s extension with Barcelona, it seems as though the negotiations have hit a roadblock. The sporting department of the club is still keen on making Dembele change his mind, but for now the club want to shelve the issue until the end of the season.
Dembele has become one of the key components of Ronald Koeman’s Barcelona side after struggling for much of his first few years at the club due to persistent injuries. The 23-year old’s current contract ends in June of 2022, and Barcelona will look to avoid a free transfer at all costs.
During the course of the current season, Dembele was deemed one of the players who are ‘untouchable’ and a key part of the club’s future. Even president Joan Laporta stated that the Frenchman deserves the right conditions to facilitate his growth at Barcelona.
However, due to his injuries, he had been deemed one of the expendable players last summer in order to free up funds. This fact has reportedly hurt the player and has thus placed his future up in the air, even though his renewal was one of the club’s key agendas.
Coach Ronald Koeman also stated his fondness for the winger and hopes that he will stay with the club in future years: “I want Dembélé to stay, he is an important player. Today, he has shown that with his game and goal. He has physically improved and has been able to play a lot of games.”
Even prior to the game against Villarreal, Koeman seemed happy that Dembele is back in contention to play since he offers a lot to the team. Dembele has gradually started showing signs of his true quality for Barcelona for the first time since his big-money move from Dortmund in 2017. In 39 appearances this term, Dembele has scored ten goals and provided four assists.
He has already attracted interest from a number of top teams across Europe lately, with Liverpool and Juventus reportedly keen on signing the World Cup winner. Barcelona will be hoping that a successful end to the season will ensure smoother negotiations leading to the player’s continuity.