Barcelona took another massive blow to their title ambitions after an embarrassing draw at home to Eibar. The Blaugrana were without their talismanic leader Lionel Messi who did not hide his disappointment from the stands as he watched his side drop points for the eighth time this season, winning just seven of their first 15 games.
Sitting in sixth place with just 25 points, Ronald Koeman has his work out for him to get Barcelona firing on all cylinders. Ahead of their trip to Huesca in the new year, here is some of the latest Barcelona news.
Lionel Messi to remain at Barcelona until 2023
Barcelona captain Lionel Messi is set to stay until 2023 before a move to Major League Soccer franchise Inter Miami, as per reports. The legendary Argentine's future has been in question ever since the dramatic transfer saga that took place in the summer, and he is still yet to renew his deal with the club.
A report from Spain [h/t: Daily Star] claims that the Barcelona superstar is eying a move to Inter Miami but will only move upon the completion of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Messi is said to be keen on remaining at Barcelona to keep himself in prime condition for the mega event in 2022, which could be the last World Cup he participates in, before moving to David Beckham's MLS franchise. The 33-year-old already has a £4m apartment in Miami and could potentially be joined by his former teammate Luis Suarez. His compatriot Gonzalo Higuain is already at Inter Miami.
Barcelona set to lose out on Memphis Depay
Ronald Koeman's side have long been linked with a move for Dutch forward Memphis Depay, but could now be set to lose out on his signature to Juventus, as per reports. The Olympique Lyon star was close to a move to the Nou Camp earlier on in the summer but the transfer fell through in the eleventh hour. They were also linked with a January move for him, but with Martin Braithwaite's recent upturn in form, they opted against a mid-season move.
While Barcelona were expected to secure his services come summer on a free, they might face competition and potentially lose out on him as Juventus appear to have entered the race for him. Juventus could stump up the €5m fee for him or use Federico Bernardeschi as part of a swap deal for Depay's services.
Barcelona presidential candidate's Erling Haaland promise
With the Barcelona presidential elections just around the corner, Emili Rousaud's advisor has claimed that the club will land the signature of Erling Haaland should he win the race. The Norwegian superstar has been one of the most incredible centre-forwards in world football since the start of last season and has several clubs vying for his services.
Speaking on a potential move to bring Haaland to the Nou Camp, Josep Maria Minguella said;
"We know all the conditions and if we win, the following day I will call Mino Raiola and we will accept those conditions. I have already advised him of that. We have a world-class sports project that is not showing just now, but Emili Rousaud has a plan that will turn this unfortunate situation [at Barcelona] around."
He has also spoken of a potential deal to sign Kylian Mbappe, albeit admitting that his situation is more complicated than that of Haaland's. He added;
"It is a little more complicated because his [Mbappe's] contract ends the next year. We are on top of the issue and movements have already been made. We are there."
The presidential elections are set to be held on the 24th of January.
Published 31 Dec 2020, 20:32 IST