Ousmane Dembele’s future at Barcelona has been the subject of speculation for some time, with the French forward out of contract at the end of the season and able to leave for free.
However, the 24-year-old is currently being tipped to sign a contract extension at the Camp Nou, and Dembele’s camp have explained why he wants to continue his career with the Catalan giants, according to reporter Shay Lugassi.
“The agreement will be soon,” said the source. “The player made the decision to stay at Barça because he feels that this is the first time there is a coach at the club who trusts and believes in him. Xavi talks with him a lot.”
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Xavi & Laports Back Dembele
New coach Xavi has already made it clear how much he wants Dembele to stay at the Camp Nou and how important he feels the forward will be to the team going forwards, as reported by Diario AS.
“I had an individual chat with him,” he said. “I made it clear to him how important he was for not only me this season, but for the future. It depends on him. Hopefully, he can renew because he’s a player capable of making a difference in the next few years.”
“He wants to stay and we want him to stay. I know he wants to stay because we have a good relationship with him,” he said. “What happens is that the agents want the best for the player and we have to show them that the best isn’t just [related] to money. For me, Dembélé is better than Mbappé.”
Dembele To Sign On Next Week?
Dembele’s new contract could be annouced as early as new week, as reported by Albert Masnou at Diario Sport. The forward will sign on for another five seasons and will also take a salary reduction.
The pay-cut will help Barca’s financial situation as it will help “lower their wage bill and allow other players to arrive.” Masnou also reports that Dembele has been convinced to stay at the Camp Nou because he likes the project Xavi has pitched to him.
Dembele could soon be joined in attack by Manchester City forward Ferran Torres. Coach Pep Guardiola told a press conference on Thursday, December 23 that the attacker is close to a move to the Camp Nou.
Torres would add to Xavi’s attacking options which have been severely hit by injuries so far this season. Meanwhile, Sergio Aguero has been forced to retire from football due to a heart condition.
The Spain international would also join a squad packed full of young, exciting talent at Barcelona, with players such as Gavi, Nico Gonzalez, Pedri, Fati, Ez Abde, and Ferran Jutgla all making an impact in the first team in 2021-22.