Barcelona president Joan Laporta confirmed on Friday in a press conference that the Catalan giants are set to announce some new signings as early as new week.
The club has been heavily linked with a host of players throughout the season in a bid to strengthen the squad. Laporta told reporters that the club is almost in a position to unveil their new players, as reported by ESPN.
“Losing has consequences and we will try and improve the squad,” he said. “Next week we will announce signings for the first team and you will see the results of what we have been working on.”
There are rumors Barca could unveil as many as four players next week. Manchester City stars Eric Garcia and Sergio Aguero are expected to arrive, along with Liverpool’s Georginio Wijnaldum and Lyon forward Memphis Depay.
All four players will arrive on free transfers after finishing their contracts with their respective clubs. Barcelona could also announce the signing of Brazilian full-back Emerson Royal from Real Betis.
The 22-year-old is part-owned by Barca and will move for a fee of €9 million, according to Marca. Emerson has just been called into the Brazil squad for international duty but will link up with Barca for pre-season.
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Laporta Talks Koeman Future
Laporta also offered an update on first-team coach Ronald Koeman’s future amid speculation the Dutchman will be sacked after just one season in charge of the Catalan giants.
The Barcelona president said he was in no rush to make a decision and would speak to the Dutchman again, as reported by Diario Sport.
“Koeman has one more year on his deal and the peace of mind that there’s no need to rush things. We’re negotiating, talking and evaluating everything. Things are on track. We don’t want to leave anything to be talked about. We want to work hard on a shared model,” he said. “We will have to see if Koeman is in the dynamic we want. His attitude has been impeccable. We’re close on many things. The relationship is very good. It’s of respect, admiration and we talk clearly. He’s expressed a desire to continue and we’re in a period of reflection. If we end up deciding we have the shame ideas of the project, things will work.”
Club legend Xavi has been linked with replacing Koeman, and Laporta also responded to speculation the former midfielder could return to the Camp Nou. He said, “We owe respect to Koeman, who has a contract with us. Don’t rule him out. Other names that are being linked, seem fine to me, because everyone wants to come (to Barça)… but we have a coach and it’s necessary to talk and take a period to reflect.”
Laporta ‘Moderately Optimistic’ On Messi
Another pressing item for Koeman to resolve is the future of Lionel Messi. The captain is out of contract in June but has reportedly received a new offer from Barcelona, according to Xavi Torres at Catalunya Radio.
Laporta said things are progressing well with Messi but a final agreement has not been reached with the captain just yet, according to Javier Giraldo at Diario Sport.
“Contract talks are going well but they’re not done yet,” he explained. “We’re working hard, all of the executives here are working hard to make a good proposal that is within our means and we hope he will accept it. Our relationship is very good. Messi loves Barça.”
The president admitted that he was “moderately optimistic” that Messi would stay and agree to continue his career at the Camp Nou and that much had changed since last summer when the Argentine famously sent a burofax to the club asking to leave.