Five dream Barcelona transfers as Xavi replaces Ronald Koeman at Nou Camp
FC Barcelona top 5 most expensive signings
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Xavi has been presented as the new manager of Barcelona shortly after Ronald Koeman was sacked at the end of last month, and the Spaniard will soon be able to make signings in the upcoming transfer window.
Xavi Hernandez was unveiled in front of Barcelona supporters on Monday after completing his return to the club, taking over from Ronald Koeman who was sacked last month.
Koeman was relieved of his duties following a poor start to the season, and Barcelona currently sit in ninth place, 11 points behind leaders Real Sociedad.
Xavi returns to the club after leaving as a player in 2015, and has been brought in following a successful spell in charge of Qatari side Al Sadd to restore identity at Barcelona, as they look to get back to their former glory.
All eyes will be on January as Xavi will attempt to make his first signings as Barca boss, but the job won’t be easy, as the club are still in a terrible financial state, making the Spaniard’s task even more difficult.
Here Express Sport take a look at five transfers Barcelona could make as Xavi returns
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The one time Barcelona academy star has been linked with a return to the Nou Camp, and the 23-year-old is said to be an ideal transfer as according to AS, Barcelona are keen to avoid short-term fixes due to their financial position.
Short-term options such as Martin Braithwaite and Luuk de Jong were signed as back-up options, but have made little to no impact since their arrivals, which was anticipated by many.
The report claims that Dani Olmo is the no.1 target of Barcelona chiefs Mateu Alemany and Ramon Planes, and his versatility is said to have caught the eye of the Barcelona hierarchy.
Olmo is reportedly keen on returning to the club, where he spent seven years as an academy player before finding success with Dinamo Zagreb.
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Raheem Sterling has been linked with a move to Barcelona for some time, and despite a prolific Euro 2020 campaign with England, the forward appears out of favour once again at Manchester City.
Sterling would likely be too expensive for Barcelona at this time, but a swap deal could play into the hands of both City and the Catalan side, with Frankie De Jong the player in question that would potentially move to England to make way.
The England international is no closer to signing an contract extension and his deal is due to expire at the end of next season, and Sterling has recently spoken about his desire to play abroad at some stage during his career.
According to Catalan paper El Nacional, former Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola would be happy to receive De Jong as part of a swap deal plus cash offer including Sterling, which could benefit both parties.
If De Jong did leave the Nou Camp, Barcelona could benefit with a replacement, and Marcelo Brozovic could be a potential option as the Croatian enters the final year of his contract at Inter Milan.
Brozovic signed for Inter in 2015 and has been a key member of their side ever since, playing a pivotal role in their Serie A success last season.
However, talks over a new deal have not progressed as Inter Milan appear unable to meet the midfielder’s wage demands, which could result in the Croatian leaving the club for free at the end of the season.
The news has put Europe’s elite on red alert, as the 28-year-old proves a valuable asset, but although Barcelona are strapped for cash, they may only have to part with wages without any transfer fee required.
With injuries to Sergio Aguero and Martin Braithwaite, Barcelona are suffering in attack and are in desperate need of reinforcements.
One option could be Cedric Bakambu, and the deal makes sense for a number of reasons, firstly because the DR Congo star has past success with fellow La Liga side Villarreal.
However, a major boost is that Bakambu could arrive for free in January as his contract expires at the end of the calendar year with Chinese Super League side Beijing Guoan.
Due to a difference in league dates Bakambu would be free to move in January, and the forward has scored 48 goals in China since arriving in Beijing back in 2018.
Xavi was extremely sad to be leaving Al Sadd, and is said to have grown a lot of love for the club, but the Spaniard also became extremely fond of one star in particular according to Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi.
Baghdad Bounedjah was a key player for Xavi in Qatar, and Goal have reported that the Spaniard could even sign the Algerian for Barcelona.
The Algerian manager said: “He made history, he scored goals everywhere…He scored the goal of the AFCON final, one of the most important goals in the history of Algerian football. We do not recognise his quality precisely because he plays in Qatar, whereas, in Qatar, there are players who cannot do it.
“The current Barca is not the Barcelona of [Lionel] Messi, Xavi, [Andres] Iniesta. In our timing, I don’t know if Xavi has in mind to bring him back to Barcelona, but I know he likes him a lot.
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