Reports: Barcelona ready to sell star player to fund Lionel Messi's new contract
Barcelona's top priority right now is to find a new manager and renew Messi's contract
What’s the story?
Barcelona are reportedly ready to sell Arda Turan to fund the new contract for Lionel Messi. The Catalan giants see the Turkish international surplus to requirements and are willing to let him go.
Turan has been a target for Chinese Super League sides for quite some time, and the La Liga giants are ready to let him go in the summer. Arsenal and Liverpool are also said to be keen on signing the former Atletico Madrid forward.
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Messi’s contract at the Camp Nou runs out in the summer of 2018. He is yet to sign an extension and reports suggest he is unsettled at the club. Despite all this, Barcelona are still looking to tie down the superstar.
Barcelona completed the signing of Turan from Atlético Madrid for €34 million, (plus €7 million in variables) in the summer of 2015. But because of their transfer ban, they could only register him in January 2016.
An unnamed Chinese Super League side made a €50 million bid for the Turkish international even before he made his Barcelona debut, but the club rejected the offer straight away. He was the subject of another €50 million bid in the January transfer window this year, but it was dismissed by the Camp Nou side again.
The heart of the matter
Barcelona's main agenda right now is to find a new manager for the club and also get Lionel Messi's contract renewed. The search for the manager is already on with Jorge Sampaoli, Eusebio Sacristán, Ronaldo Koeman, Mauricio Pochettino, Ernesto Valverde, Juan Carlos Unzué and even Arsene Wenger linked with the job.
Messi's contract situation is one that needs to be solved right now. There has been no progress in the case, and the talks have stalled since November 2016. The Argentine wants to stay, but there are a few conditions he has, which the board is not keen on agreeing.
Arda Turan has not been able to force himself into the starting XI and has been more of an impact sub in his Barcelona career. He has managed a lot of starts, but that is only when the main players are rested, injured or suspended.
Turan is highly likely to be sold in the summer to a Chinese club more than anyone else. The club and the player would benefit financially from this move and with the forward already in his 30s, he would not mind running there.
Selling Turan to fund Messi's contract sounds weird, especially for a club like Barcelona who are financially sound.