Transfer News: Chelsea among clubs considering a swoop for Barcelona outcast Ousmane Dembele
The Frenchman has been with FC Barcelona for nearly five years now, but has seen his time with the Catalan giants be riddled with injury concerns. Despite these issues, the 24-year-old has been a sought-after player, and it now seems like his time in Spain will be coming to a close in January.
Barcelona’s director of football Mateu Alemany yesterday said that the player would depart before the January 31 deadline, with the club apparently open to a £3m loan deal until the end of the season. However, the winger released a statement saying that he was still committed to seeing out his contract till the summer.
“Still under contract, I am fully involved and at the disposal of my club, my coach. My field is the ball, playing football, sharing moments of joy with my team-mates. Above all, let’s focus on winning.”
Alemany has said that the forward doesn’t want to be part of their project going forward. The France international and Barcelona seem to have had a falling out recently, after the club announced that they would sell the player this month after prolonged discussions about a possible contract renewal, which the player has repeatedly refused, according to Sky Sports.
With Xavi Hernandez now at the helm and Dembele recently returning from injury, it was expected that the forward would be looking to start afresh at Barca under a new manager and commit to a new deal that would see him stay in Catalonia for the near future.
What next for Dembele?
However, Dembele has hit back at these claims by the Spanish giants, saying that he refused to respond to blackmail of this sort. Taking to Instagram, the winger wrote that there has been a lot of gossip over the years said about him with an intention to harm the player.
“Gossip about me has been piling up for four years. It’s been fours years since people have spoken for me, shamefully lied with one sole purpose – to harm me. As of today it’s over. From today I will speak honestly without giving in to any kind of blackmail.”
Things seem to have taken an ugly turn in Catalonia, with Barcelona and Dembele involved in a spat over alleged contract negotiations. With the Spanish club looking to offload the player before the end of this month, there remains a chance for us to make a move for the talented winger.
Over recent weeks, we seem to be struggling in attack and failing to create meaningful chances to score. The forward line seems uninspired and lacking in effort to find the back of the net regularly, which has seen our form dip and effectively fall out of the title race. It was the most evident against Manchester City in our 1-0 loss- a result that was a big blow to our title ambitions.
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With a relatively low loan fee quoted by Barcelona, we wouldn’t be unwise to take a gamble on Dembele until the end of the season, with the team facing multiple fixtures in the next few months across different competitions. Coach Thomas Tuchel has prior experience working with the Frenchman and would have seen first-hand how he is capable of playing on either wing. A speedy customer on the flanks with the ability to play with both feet, he can certainly increase the quality and depth of our attack by a considerable margin.
It remains to be seen whether Barca will go back on their stance after Dembele took to social media to commit his time with the club until the end of his contract, but as things stand, Chelsea are well-positioned to snap up what could be a bargain buy in January to provide a well-needed boost for our attack.
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