After crashing out of the UEFA Champions League, Barcelona are focused on giving La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid a run for their money. Behind the scenes, the club is preparing ahead of what is expected to be a tricky summer transfer window given the difficult financial condition they are in.
Without further ado, let's take a look at the top stories involving Barcelona from 17 March 2021.
MediaPro CEO funds Joan Laporta's deposit payment
FC Barcelona New President Election
As per the rules of the club, in order for any presidential election winner to assume the role, he/she would have to deposit 15% of the club's budget, which in this case is €124 million. Earlier reports had suggested that Laporta was short on payment and still needed more money in order to make the deposit.
There have been concerns over whether or not Joan Laporta will be able to make the payment before the deadline, which is today. According to Catalan media outlet Expansion, MediaPro CEO Jaume Roures has pledged €30 million towards Laporta's deposit. He has made the payment through a company named Orpheus.
The report adds that MediaPro has joined hands with Eduard Romeu (Audax) to furnish the rest of the €70 million that Laporta had to secure.
Barcelona and Real Madrid eyeing Ibrahima Konate
Despite being in precarious financial conditions, Barcelona and Real Madrid continue to be linked with high-profile players. According to AS, the Spanish giants are now interested in RB Leipzig centre-back Ibrahima Konate.
Both sides were earlier linked with Dayot Upamecano but the youngster is now on his way to join Bayern Munich and this has caused both Barcelona and Real Madrid to shift their attentions to his partner Ibrahima Konate.
The report claims that Konate has a release clause of €45 million but RB Leipzig would be willing to part with him if they receive a bid in the ballpark of €25-€30 million.
While Barcelona are looking to bring in reinforcements to their backline, Real Madrid are looking to replace Raphael Varane, who looks set to leave the club in the summer.
📰 [AS🥈] | 21-year-old Leipzig center-back Ibrahima Konaté is on the agenda of both Real Madrid and Barcelona, and his price could range from €25 million to €30 million pic.twitter.com/fjOUlJPHd4
— BarçaTimes (@BarcaTimes) March 16, 2021
Barcelona closing in on Yusuf Demir
Arsenal FC v Rapid Wien: Group B - UEFA Europa League
The rumour mill is on a relentless quest to find the new Cristiano Ronaldo-s and Lionel Messi-s. The latest that's been added to the list is Rapid Wien forward Yusuf Demir. Despite being just 17-years-old, Demir has been exceptional for the Austrian side and is now a top target for Barcelona, as per reports in Germany.
Barcelona have reportedly ramped up their pursuit of the youngster ever since Joan Laporta was elected president and they are hoping that they can secure his services for around €6-€8 million.
Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Manchester United and Manchester City have all been linked with Demir.
Barcelona are close to completing the signing of Yusuf Demir from Rapid Vienna. Bayern, Dortmund, Stuttgart as well as Manchester United and Manchester City have already inquired about the player and not all of them have given up hope entirely [ @FT_Redaktion] pic.twitter.com/HTEXtDiRRL
— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) March 16, 2021 SHA
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