Barcelona chief Joan Laporta ‘talks with Mino Raiola about signing three clients’
Lionel Messi: New Barcelona president vows to keep star
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Barcelona president Joan Laporta has talked with Mino Raiola about signing three of his clients, reports say. The two men recently discussed a potential deal for Erling Haaland. However, the Borussia Dortmund star isn’t wanted for this summer’s transfer window with the La Liga giants preferring to strike an agreement in a year’s time.
Barcelona appear to be back.
Ronald Koeman has overseen a turbulent campaign at the Nou Camp but, ever since the 4-1 Champions League defeat to PSG in February, they’ve bounced back in style.
Barcelona are now very much in the mix to win the La Liga title, with Atletico Madrid struggling at the current moment in time.
But, determined not to allow the club to rest on their laurels, Laporta wants more.
And Spanish website OkDiario claim the new Barcelona president has talked with Raiola about potential deals for three of his clients.
Matthijs de Ligt has long been on their radar.
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The Netherlands international was expected to join Barcelona in the summer transfer window of 2019 after sparkling for Ajax, helping them reach the semi-finals of the Champions League that year.
Yet he ended up moving to Juventus instead, angering the Catalan giants in the process.
With Juventus struggling under Andres Pirlo, however, they’re at genuine risk of missing out on a place in next season’s Champions League.
And that could work in Barcelona’s favour, with interest in De Ligt still very much there.
Stefan de Vrij could leave Inter Milan in this summer’s transfer window and Laporta, it’s claimed, is keen on snapping him up a well.
And Barcelona are also interested in signing Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba, who is still yet to sign a new contract over at Old Trafford.
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The 2018 World Cup winner was wanted by the Catalan titans three years ago, back when his relationship with Jose Mourinho was falling apart.
Barcelona lodged a bid of £45million plus Andre Gomes and Yerry Mina for Pogba, who sparkled as his country won the World Cup for the first time since 1998.
But it wasn’t enough, with United digging their heels in and preventing a deal from taking place.
Regarding Haaland, it’s said Barcelona would prefer to sign the Dortmund star next summer for financial reasons.
And they only talked with Raiola about the Dortmund star to drive up the price for fierce rivals Real Madrid, who are keen on the Norwegian as well.
Meanwhile, Laporta has several big tasks ahead of him at Barcelona.
And keeping Lionel Messi will be a priority, with the Argentina international continuing to shine despite links to PSG and Manchester City.
Speaking recently, Laporta opened up on Messi – and said he’d do all he can to persuade the 33-year-old to stay at the Nou Camp despite interest from elsewhere.
“I take the opportunity to say again that I will try to convince Leo (Messi) to stay with us,” he said at his unveiling.
“That is a must-do task, I will do all I can. He knows it.
“Whatever he does will be OK but we will try to make him stay because he is the best player in the history of football.
“And my apologies Leo, for saying this right here and right now, but you know of my love for you, Barca loves you a lot and if this stadium would be full when you play the next game I am sure you wouldn’t be able to leave.”
Laporta also admitted Barcelona must become ‘economically viable’ again.
“It is true that the economic situation of the club is the source of pre-occupation for all Barca associates and us as well and that is our priority,” Laporta added.
“To turn Barca economically viable again, that is why we have a shock plan we will implement. We know how to do it, it will mean making an effort and working a lot.
“Now that we have the power to make decisions we will try to generate new sources of income. We will try to make the right decisions to reverse the current situation.”
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