Barcelona seem to be preparing for life after Lionel Messi and are looking to exchange one of their youngsters for an AC Milan star.
Barcelona suffered a heavy defeat at home at the hands of Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League Round of 16 tie. The club has a plethora of issues to deal with both on and off the pitch and they ought to be braced for a hectic summer transfer window.
Without further ado, let's take a look at the top stories involving Barcelona from 18 February 2021.
Xavi says he hopes to return to Barcelona as a coach
Barcelona legend Xavi was linked with the manager's job before Ronald Koeman was eventually appointed. The Spaniard has previously discussed his desire to become manager of the club where he enjoyed an illustrious career at and now in an interview with FIFA, he has once again admitted the same.
“Everyone sees me as the Barca coach one day. I respect Barca a lot and I also have respect for Koeman, the current coach. But I hope [to return as coach]. I won’t hide that, but with respect for the current management team at the club, who are in the middle of [three] competitions, and I wish them the best.
“We will see who comes in as president in the next month. But of course, it’s a dream to coach Barca. There’s no doubt about that.”
Lyon president Aulas says they're hopeful of Depay extending his contract
Olympique Lyon forward Memphis Depay is one of Ronald Koeman's top transfer targets. Though a deal seemed close to being sealed in the summer transfer window, it broke down due to Barcelona's precarious financial condition.
Now Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas has revealed that he believes Depay can be convinced to kick on at the Ligue 1 outfit and sign a new deal.
Aulas told Le Progres:
“Until the end we believe that he will renew for next season. Right now it is not something that is possible but why not? He is a great talent, world class.
There are not many like him in the team. He brings solutions. I always wanted him to remain but our offers did not convince him. We helped him go to FC Barcelona but financially it was not possible.”
Barcelona interested in swapping Francisco Trincao for Rafael Leao
Barcelona are preparing for life after Lionel Messi, according to PianetaMilan. The report claims that Barcelona have reignited their interest in AC Milan striker Rafael Leao. They are looking for deals that wouldn't hurt them much in terms of money.
Rafael Leao is valued at €40 million by the Rossoneri and they are willing to settle for nothing less than that. Barcelona cannot cough up that much money and are thus pondering over the idea of swapping young winger Francisco Trincao for Leao.