LaLiga news: Barcelona sell wonderkid, but there's a catch

Barcelona posted a farewell message for Marlon Santos on their official website
Shea Robinson

What's the story?

Barcelona hav allowed their highly-rated young centre-back, Marlon Santos to complete a permanent move to Serie A club, Sassuolo. According to Barcelona's official website, the 22-year-old completed a €6 million move to Italy late yesterday evening.

However, the Catalans have inserted several clauses into the transfer. The official announcement on Barcelona's website states that La Blaugrana retain the right to buy back the player and are also entitled to 50% of the economic rights for any future sale.

Should Santos play more than 50 games for I Neroverdi, then Barcelona will forfeit any clause regarding a future sale and Sassuolo will pay the Catalans an additional €6 million.

In case you didn't know...

Marlon Santos began his career in the youth setup of his hometown club, Fluminense. He made 54 appearances over four years for the Brazilian club before moving to Barcelona on loan for a season in 2016.

During his loan spell, Santos played three times for the Barcelona first team and 27 times for the Barcelona B team. His impressive performances over the course of the season earned him a €5 million, four-year contract at the Nou Camp.

Upon his permanent transfer in 2017, the Brazilian was loaned out to the French club, Nice for the whole of last season. He made 24 starts for the Ligue 1 side and two substitute appearances, playing a big role in helping them finish a respectable 8th in the final standings.

The heart of the matter

Having joined Barcelona's pre-season tour this summer, Santos was expected to be used as a rotation or backup central defender throughout this season. However, the lack of first-team opportunities at the Nou Camp pushed the young Brazilian into moving away from Spain to seek more playing time.

Barcelona are fully aware of the potential displayed by Santos which is why they inserted numerous clauses into his transfer to Sassuolo. Should the 22-year-old enjoy a good season in Serie A, we may see him back at the Nou Camp next summer.



What's next?

Santos will certainly become an essential player for Sassuolo this season and hope to help the Italian club build on their comfortable mid-table finish last season. The capture of the young Brazilian represents an excellent piece of business for I Neroverdi who now boast one of the most highly-rated young center-backs in their ranks.

Edited by Arvind Sriram


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