Tag Archives: Ousmane Dembele

Ousmane Dembele won’t be renewing Barcelona contract – report

Ousmane Dembele will not be renewing his Barcelona contract beyond this summer after negotiations between the two parties broke down.

The French winger joined the club in a €145m deal from Borussia Dortmund to replace Neymar when he left for Paris Saint-Germain back in 2017, but he has suffered hugely with injuries ever since.

In fact, Dembele has featured just 126 times for the club in four-and-a-half years, scoring 30 times.

The 24-year-old’s contract is due to expire in the summer and Barcelona had been confident that they would be able to convince him to re-sign with the club, with manager Xavi publicly admitting they want to keep him.

However it emerged on Wednesday night that negotiations between the two parties had broken down over wages, with Barcelona claiming they can’t afford his demands.

Dembele’s agent leaked a statement to the press in Spain, where they questioned Barcelona’s claims considering they just signed Ferran Torres in a €55m deal from Man City and are also keen on signing Erling Haaland in the summer from Dortmund for his €75m release clause.

While their statement may be factually correct, the feeling behind it seems more like an excuse than a reason to not re-sign.

Dembele’s injury problems mean he can’t be relied upon for a prolonged period of time and if Barcelona are planning to sign Haaland alongside Torres then they won’t want to waste their wage budget on someone who’s rarely available.

With that said, ‘Dembouz’ is without a doubt one of the most talented wingers in the world when he’s fit and would definitely be a big asset to the club if he were to stay.

Barcelona are right to not be held to ransom by the player, it’s part of the reason they’re in the financial mess they’re in to begin with. But Dembele has every right to feel aggrieved too that Barcelona want to pay others more than him after initially agreeing terms.

All signs point to the end of the road between the two parties now, so it will be very interesting to see if Dembele leaves the club in January so that Barcelona can get some cash for him instead of losing him for nothing.

Newcastle looking to bring in two huge names following takeover

Newcastle United are keen to bring in both Erik Ten Haag and Ousmane Dembele as they look to make a statement following their takeover.

The Magpies were bought by the Saudi Arabian government last month unofficially, but have now got almost unlimited funds to spend over the next several years to become a major force in football.

After sacking manager Steve Bruce last week, the club have now turned their attentions to incomings and reports are suggesting that there are two huge names they are eyeing up.

According to several reports the new owners are targeting current Ajax boss Erik Ten Haag as their new manager and are willing to offer him £6million-per-year after tax to get him to join the club.

The Dutch boss has overseen a renaissance at the Amsterdam club following their Champions League run a few years ago and they are now back to their free-flowing best, with youngsters shining and lots of goals being scored.

That is something that is appealing to the north-east club, but Ten Haag is reportedly not sold on the idea. He has also been linked with the Manchester United job, should Ole Gunnar Solskjaer get the sack after the recent poor run of results.

The amount of cash available in the transfer market could potentially convince him though, especially with the news that Newcastle are planning to splash the cash on trying to persuade Barcelona winger Ousmane Dembele to join.

Ousmane Dembele of FC Barcelona waves the fans prior to the Joan Gamper Trophy match between FC Barcelona and Juventus at Estadi Johan Cruyff on...

The French winger joined the Catalan giants in a €145m deal back in August 2017 as Neymar’s replacement after he joined Paris Saint-Germain.

However a string of injury problems and attitude issues in training have seen him fail to really live up to expectations and the club and he is currently in the final year of his contract.

Barcelona are desperate to re-sign him to a new deal but Dembele is reportedly unsure about signing after a lack of game time, leaving Newcastle to believe they could swoop in and bring him to the Premier League.

Newcastle fans are excited and the Premier League is waiting to see what they do first. January is only around the corner, so not long to wait now.

Edinson Cavani and Manchester United: It Makes Sense

The cat is out of the bag and Manchester United have made their move for attacking depth as Edinson Cavani has agreed a two-year deal with the club.

Reports materialised on Saturday night that the PSG all-time top goalscorer will travel to England overnight and undergo medicals with the club before signing a one-year contract with the option of an added year.

The news was met with division in the Manchester United fan base as some bemoaned the profile of player and his cost, while others were happy for a quality attacking option to be added to the squad on a free transfer.

It’s an interesting conversation to have. At first, it doesn’t matter who the club bring in if his name isn’t Jadon Sancho.

The club have spent the best part of 18 months working to bring Sancho to the club and the terms have been laid out throughout the saga. Dortmund wanted €120million guaranteed. Reports said they were happy to do the deal with instalments so long as a majority of the money was paid up front. Manchester United didn’t do it. They continued to brief that Dortmund would lower their asking price as the window drew to a close, despite Dortmund telling the world that it was €120million or nothing.

Cavani isn’t and will never be as good a signing or a fit for Manchester United as Sancho would be, but Sancho isn’t coming.

What Cavani offers is a quality option for the attack. At 33 years old, he’s in the twilight for sure but his quality can’t be denied. He played 22 games last season for PSG before being frozen out post-January and then leaving the club on a free transfer before the season resumed for the Champions League. In this games, he scored 7 goals but he was largely used as a substitute behind Kylian Mbappe and Mauro Icardi.

He’s being brought in as an alternative to Sancho, which isn’t good. However, as a free transfer on similar wages to what Sancho would’ve earned (reports say Cavani will earn around £200k p/w) then the deal isn’t as bad as many are making out.

He is capable of playing across the front line and is a natural goalscorer. He is a better option off the bench than all the current attackers and the quality level doesn’t fall in the slightest if he starts a game ahead of any of Martial, Rashford or Greenwood.

The reported agent fee of €10million is very high, but it will likely be negotiated down slightly since the player is keen to play in the Champions League and can’t be registered after Monday’s deadline. With Odion Ighalo due to leave in January and Dan James just quite clearly not up to the standard needed, Cavani helps boost the attacking quality in the side.

Yes, he’s not Sancho or even Ousmane Dembele but he is an attacking threat that boosts the quality of the squad. He’s a proven leader, has experience at the top level and it’s a short-term deal which means we can return to the market next summer.

I would much prefer to sign Cavani to someone like Ismaila Sarr who, despite a good reputation, would cost around £40 million and be on wages of around £100k p/w. What the club needs right now in that attacking position is someone who can help the starting line-up while also can rotate in and out of the side.

It’s not an ideal signing by any stretch of the imagination and the way Manchester United have gone about it is poor. It’s a clear panic signing, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad signing.

Who Should Manchester United Target As A Jadon Sancho Alternative?

With two weeks to go in the Premier League transfer window, it seems almost definite now that Ole Gunnar Solskjær will not be getting his No.1 target for the right wing position.

Manchester United have been pursuing Jadon Sancho for almost 18 months, with the club publicly making him their prime target this summer after securing a return to Champions League football last season.

Dortmund were firm, they wanted €120 million guaranteed as a fee to let the player leave. According to reports they were happy to accept instalments, they just wanted a good chunk up front to replace him and then the rest in guaranteed payments – not add-ons. Manchester United were adamant they would not pay that much during this window with the pandemic still in full-flow. There was hope that the two would be able to find a compromise but it hasn’t happened.

With the German outfit beginning their season with Sancho as part of their squad, it’s highly unlikely now that they will be willing to let him go so late in the transfer window and it’s highly unlikely that Manchester United will suddenly turn around and pay the amount they’ve refused to pay all summer long. The deal, for now, is dead in the water.

While Sancho will surely remain a target going forward, what should Manchester United do now? Do they look for stop-gap alternatives? Do they sign another winger instead and forget about Sancho altogether? Do they sign a new winger AND look to bring in Sancho next summer too? There are options.

As a stop-gap, the club have been linked with loan moves for Ivan Perisic and Douglas Costa. Both men are deemed as surplus to requirements at their current clubs (Inter and Juventus respectively) and have been linked with the club often in the past. Perisic was part of the hugely successful Bayern Munich side last season and was wanted in a permanent capacity but the two sides couldn’t agree on a fee and the German side walked away from the deal. For me, the club should steer clear. Short-term options are not what the club need right now and both players are left-footed who prefer to play on the left wing. It would just be bad judgement all round.

The reality is that Sancho is the perfect target for the club at the moment. He is young, English, quick, can play on either wing, scores goals, creates assists and doesn’t flounder against a low-block defence. The club should absolutely return for him at the next possible opportunity if they can and get a deal done if they’re unwilling to do so this summer. But they need reinforcements now too.

There are plenty of young wingers out there who should Manchester United be willing to spend a bit of money, they can try to bring in that would add quality depth and still not close off the prospect of Sancho joining in the future.

Ousmane Dembele has struggled with injuries for almost his entire spell at Barcelona and some disciplinary problems have seen the club consider cutting ties with him previously. While Ronald Koeman has him as part of the squad for the coming season, Barça are not light in attack. With Messi, Griezmann, Fati, Coutinho already at the club and Memphis to join, Dembele could be potentially become available. United should look to make a loan move for ‘Dembouz’ with the option of a permanent deal next summer. They’d likely have to pay his wages for the summer and offer a considerable loan fee, but he has the type of X-factor that Jadon Sancho also possesses. If he’s in any way available, United should have him earmarked as the first alternative.

FC Barcelona v Slavia Praha: Group F - UEFA Champions League : News Photo

Another option at Barcelona is Ansu Fati. The youngster broke into the first-team at Barca last season and was the shining star of a horrid season at the Nou Camp aged just 16. He made his Spain debut just prior to the season starting and became the youngest ever player and scorer for the senior national team. A signing would be nigh on impossible but if United are willing to spend the big money on Sancho but face stubborness from Dortmund, Fati would be a fitting alternative for a big money signing.

Another option could be Callum Hudson-Odoi of Chelsea. The young winger was linked with a move to Bayern Munich last summer but instead signed a new contract with the club before picking up a serious achilles injury. Since then he has struggled to get regular minutes under Frank Lampard and has been linked with a move away yet again. He has dribbling, speed, ability with both feet, ability to beat a man one-on-one, playmaking and goalscoring. He’s similar in that sense to Sancho and would be available for much less than Sancho would cost. The likelihood of a deal isn’t great considering the rivalry between the two clubs but if the player is keen to move on and he isn’t first choice, a bid of around £40 million could be enough to get the Blues ears perked up.

A left-field option would be young Dutchman Calvin Stengs. I linked him with Manchester City previously as a potential replacement for Leroy Sane after he signed for Bayern Munich for much of the same reasons as I’m listing him here. A left-footed winger who plays mostly from the right hand side for AZ Alkmaar, Stengs is a goal-threat and a dangerous dribbler on the ball, while he also has the ability to split defences with a pass as his 9 assists for last season showed. Only 21 years old, he fits perfectly into the profile that Solskjær is trying to build at the club and would be relatively cheap in comparison to all the players mentioned in this list.

With the Sancho deal dead, United need to make a decision and fast on what they want to do with their right-wing this season.