Barcelona players' release clauses: Are they all worth it? Who is affordable?
In 1985, a Royal Decree was passed that allowed workers in Spain to rescind their contract by compensating their employers. It gave workers the legal right to seek employment elsewhere without any barriers.
That rule also applied to football. After all, football players are technically employed by the club. La Liga clubs have since used it as a deterrent to keep away other clubs from circling their players like hungry vultures waiting for the opportune moment to swoop in.
Barcelona are no different. Every player has a release clause in his contract which is, by law, proportional to their wages at the club. However, it is safe to say that some release clauses do not exactly set a benchmark for certain players.
So which players are worth their release clause in the current transfer market that is highly inflated?
#1 Pointless Release Clauses
Luis Suarez: €200m
The Uruguayan striker is starting to find his 2015/16 form (59 goals in all competitions) after a poor start to the season but at the age of 31, no club is going to spend €200m on a striker who probably has just one or two years of top level football left in him.
Andre Gomes: €100m
Although he was signed for €35m before the transfer market lost its collective marbles, Gomes has not shown that he is worth that price tag.
Injuries have seen him miss a few games this season but that isn't why Ernesto Valverde hasn't picked him in other games. Quite simply put, he doesn't offer a veritable threat when he is on the ball.
Paco Alcacer: €100m
Another player who has barely featured for Barcelona is Alcacer. One can't blame him when he has Suarez and Lionel Messi for competition up front. In Valverde's preferred 4-4-2 formation, Alcacer can only hope for substitute appearances or when the two big stars are rested.
€100m for a player who warms the bench? Please!
Thomas Vermaelen: €80m
The Belgian defender was a failed signing from the start. Signed when he was injured, Vermaelen struggled to regain full fitness and this season is actually the first time he has had a run of games - more so because of injuries in the squad.
At 32, no club is going to pay €80m for an injury-prone player who Barcelona also tried to get rid of by loaning him to AS Roma last season.
Andres Iniesta: €125m
Before you get out your knives, the only reason Iniesta is listed alongside these players is due to two reasons: his age and his loyalty to Barcelona.
The Spaniard turns 34 before the World Cup (which will probably be his swansong with the Spanish national team) and that price is too high for a midfielder who is way past his peak.
Eyebrows were raised when he was selected in the Team of the Year when there were so many other deserving candidates. And with a "contract for life" at the Camp Nou, he is set to finish his career at Barcelona.