Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman makes Memphis Depay transfer claim impacting Liverpool

Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman has confirmed he wants to sign Memphis Depay this summer, but will only be able to make a bid once the club sells players. Depay has emerged as Barca’s top target this summer, but there’s an issue holding up the deal. 

Barca are in the middle of a squad overhaul after Koeman’s appointment. 

Following the catastrophic end to their season with last month’s 8-2 defeat to Bayern Munich and the sacking of Quique Setien, numerous players have left and are expected to depart before the window closes. 

So far, they’ve parted ways with Arthur – in a swap deal for Miralem Pjanic – Ivan Rakitic, Arda Turan, Carles Perez and Marc Cucurella 

But more are expected to leave, most notably Luis Suarez, Arturo Vidal and Martin Braithwaite, and Koeman confirmed they will have to raise funds before they can sign anyone else. 

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He said, per Fabrizio Romano: We need to sell players before we can sign Depay.” 

Barca have been linked with Georginio Wijnaldum as a new partner for Frenkie de Jong, but have Depay as their top target. 

And their transfer policy could have ramifications for Liverpool, as it could emerge that Barca opt against making a bid for the midfielder if they prioritise the Lyon forward, who they have reportedly agreed personal terms with. 

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas claimed Barcelona chiefs had told him they can’t afford to make a move for the forward.  

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He said: “Barça’s president told me on Sunday that they are suffering a lot, financially, because of the COVID-19 crisis and won’t be able to make an offer for Depay.” 

And ESPN pundit Alejandro Moreno believes Barca should end their interest in the Dutch forward and sign a midfielder, but theorised that the interest is a result of Koeman wanting to stamp his authority on the side.  

“I just don’t see where Memphis Depay fits into this team,” he said on ESPN FC. 

“Is this a ‘need’ area? No, you don’t need any more attacking players, or in-between players, or wingers, or number tens. They’ve got that covered and plenty more around. 

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“They need help from the midfield back, not from the midfield forward.  

“If they’re going to spend money, and they’re a club which has been struggling with their money, it feels like they’re reaching if they go out and sign Memphis Depay. 

“That tells me Ronald Koeman is saying ‘that’s my player, that’s my guy, that’s the one I want’. He’s selling it to the board and telling them they need to get Depay.  

“I don’t think they need him if you’re Barcelona, and certainly not more than someone from the midfield or further back.”  

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