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Barcelona News Roundup: Arsene Wenger advises PSG regarding potential Lionel Messi signing, Ronald Koeman reacts after PSG thrashing and more - 17 February 2021 

FC Barcelona v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Round Of 16 Leg One
FC Barcelona v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Round Of 16 Leg One
ANALYST
Modified 17 Feb 2021
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Barcelona suffered an absolute thrashing at the hands of Paris Saint-Germain last night in the first-leg of their UEFA Champions League Round of 16 clash.

Barcelona have endured troubled times on and off the pitch recently and last night's 4-1 defeat is only bound to make matters worse.

On that note, here is a look at some of the top news stories pertaining to Barcelona from 17 February 2021:


Juventus overtake Barcelona in race for Memphis Depay

Barcelona have been closely looking at Lyon
Barcelona have been closely looking at Lyon's Memphis Depay

Barcelona's desperate search for reinforcements has made them closely monitor Lyon's Memphis Depay as per several recent reports.

The 27-year-old will see his contract at Lyon expire this summer, after which he will be free to join any club of his choosing as a free agent.

Despite Barcelona's alleged interest in the Dutch international, recent reports from Calciomercato claim that Juventus have now surged ahead to reportedly become favorites to sign Depay.

This is due to Barcelona's financial crisis and potential inability to offer the same kind of wages Juventus will be able to.

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The report also claims that Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund are interested in Depay, but are unlikely to be the player's chosen destination ahead of Juventus.

Arsene Wenger advises PSG regarding potential Lionel Messi signing

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi's future remains uncertain

Lionel Messi is widely expected to leave Barcelona this summer after trying and failing to force an exit last summer.

However, there is still no clarity regarding the 33-year-old's future, although he has been heavily linked with a potential move to Paris Saint-Germain.

Meanwhile, PSG are understood to be deep in negotiations with Neymar and Kylian Mbappe over contract extensions.

In light of the circumstances, former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was asked to comment on the contract situation as well as the PSG's interest in Messi.

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The legendary manager shared his two cents on the matter. He believes PSG's priorities should lie in keeping their two existing superstars, rather than going after Lionel Messi.

Speaking on BeIN Sports, Wenger said:

"Lionel Messi demands a huge investment. I would say PSG should be more focused on keeping their two best players and invest all the money they have in these two players."
"[Kylian] Mbappe is 22, the best player in the world maybe or the future best player in the world. When you have the next two best players in the world, you keep them," Wenger added.

Ronald Koeman reacts after PSG thrash Barcelona

Ronald Koeman will have plenty to think about following Barcelona
Ronald Koeman will have plenty to think about following Barcelona's 4-1 defeat to PSG

Following Barcelona's crushing 4-1 defeat to PSG last night in the UEFA Champions League, Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman attended a press conference and was candid about his side's performance.

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As per reports from ESPN, Koeman acknowledged that his side lacks certain elements. However, Koeman reinforced his belief that the Catalan club are on the right track in terms of development.

"You always have to aspire to win everything, but we have to recognize that we're short in certain areas," Koeman said.
"I have said several times that we're on the right path, but we lack things. [Sergino] Dest at 20, in four years will be better. Pedri, at his age, is already brilliant, but in five years he will be better than any PSG midfielder," he added.

The 57-year-old defended his team, but did say that there's plenty of room for improvement.

"I am realistic. I always defend my team. We did everything. We can defend better; we can be more aggressive and we're going to change that and work on it.
"We lack things, sure, but I have never thought before this game that we didn't. It's not the end of the path. It seems I am more realistic than everyone else," Koeman continued.

He also went on to admit that it's unlikely Barcelona will overturn last night's result and qualify for the next round of Europe's most prestigious tournament.

"I could lie but at 4-1 there's hardly any chance of going through. They're a side that has already been put together and we are in transition. We must improve in the areas where we're lacking. That's my responsibility," Koeman concluded.
Published 17 Feb 2021, 20:48 IST
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