The coach wants a left-back and a another attacker if sales finally happen.
With La Liga just under three weeks away, Barcelona are starting an important week in the transfer market. They have done their homework and now must make decisions. Ernesto Valverde would like everything sorted in seven days. He wants the squad lightened and a left-back signed. If Malcom goes, which is on track, he wants another attacker, too. Two signings and four departures.
Barça’s priority is to sign a left-back to compete with Jordi Alba. There are several options on the table but there’s not much money to invest. Real Betis’ Junior Firpo is the top target. There’s a good relationship with Betis but Barça don’t want to pay more than 25 million euros. And there’s no agreement. Therefore, they are also negotiating to sign Augsburg’s Philipp Max. It will be Valverde who takes the final decision with Eric Abidal and Ramon Planes.
Another name which could appear if Junior doesn’t come is Rayo Vallecano’s Alex Moreno. He was set to move to Betis but the fact they haven’t sold Junior yet has stalled the deal. In any case, there should be a new left-back at Barça by the time the week is out.
Signing another attacker will be more complicated. Malcom’s close to leaving and the hope is that Philippe Coutinho can still be sold. If they both leave, Valverde wants another forward and Neymar’s the one. PSG have told Barça he is not for sale, although the player wants to return to Camp Nou. It’s a slow burner and nothing is moving very quickly on that front at the moment.
Neymar apart, Valverde wants the squad ready for the tour of the U.S before the league starts, There are still details to sort. Malcom, Rafinha, Coutinho and Rakitic are the players who could leave to make the squad smaller. Valverde wants there to be room for the B team players to get a chance this season. Two more signings and four more exits are being worked on.