Lautaro Martínez will cost 111 million euros during two fortnights in July in which the 22-year-old Argentine center-forward striker from Inter becomes more accessible, to say the least. They say in France that PSG will be ready this summer to sell Neymar at 28 for about 150 million after buying it for 222 in August 2017. He is already fed up with the indiscipline of the Brazilian winger. These are the two objectives for the next season of FC Barcelona, which must have 250 million euros plus 20 ready to pay the high chips that the two players would have (seven the Argentine and no less than thirteen the Brazilian), without counting commissions of habitual intermediaries and subjects in all operations.
Double interest is not a secret. It is published daily and the Barça club feeds it privately, sometimes also in public in the case of Neymar. However, the entity’s economic situation is so worrisome that it was the first league club to propose an ERTE to its players when the competition stopped to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Something doesn’t fit. Especially in an entity that holds elections in 2021 and that has stopped the million-dollar works of Espai Barça and the remodeling of the Camp Nou while waiting for everything to normalize. Interruption won’t come cheap. Not to mention the internal war the club is going through, with managers invited to resign and the pre-candidate Víctor Font waiting for events with Xavi Hernández as future coach. Perhaps it is necessary to ask him already for the name of the signings and not Quique Setién.
It would not be the first time that Josep Maria Bartomeu, increasingly deranged in the Barça presidency, sent his subordinates to negotiate with almost empty hands. It usually happens when you are interested in pretending a strength that the club no longer has. This time it will have to be like this, although it will try to put virtual exchange currencies on the table: players.
Messi, wait or go
Inter will try to convince him with an offer of about 70 or 80 million, if he can get them together, plus the transfer of a player like Arturo Vidal, highly valued in Serie A. The seduction to PSG to try to pay the least amount possible should be with a barter with French players like Umtiti, Dembélé or Todibo, although the Brazilian Coutinho, now loaned to a Bayern that will not keep it, may be the key.
Bartomeu hopes that the global economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic will end economic operations of more than 100 million euros. He believes that the time has come for the exchange of players, although for this the opinion of the protagonists also counts and that you never know what direction it can take.
In any case, the sporting claims of Barça’s next summer market and its economic reality collide too much not to be surprised. Lautaro Martínez and Neymar can be impossible dreams. And that could really make Messi angry, who wants a level team to compete for all the titles. I may have to keep waiting. Or leave. It would be the sentence for Bartomeu as early as 2020 without the need to exhaust his mandate in 2021.