The latest Barcelona operations value money over whats on the field.
Johan Cruff once famously said “The money should be in the field and not in the bank.” when former Barcelona president, Jose Luis Nunez, refused to fulfill his desire to have free rein on signing players.
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Things have changed under the current club president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, where the desire of money in the bank has taken over the squad’s future. As evident in the latest transfer operation to secure 30-year old Miralem Pjanic at the loss of a talented future star in Arthur Melo.
This exchange was not done to strengthen the existing squad but to balance the financial books as a political play. Blaugrana needs to raise finances this season and Bartomeu had an ambition of reaching 124 million euros in the transfer budget itself, to secure big names such as Lautaro Martinez and Neymar.
This could be a disastrous approach as it not only places existing talented footballers’ futures at risk but also shows a toxic mentality where the club is prepared to lose promising players for a monetary benefit.
The exchange deal between Pjanic and Arthur is being reported to be valued at 80 million euros, but interestingly the players are actually not valued at 70 and 80 million respectively as stated by the amount for which they are being transferred. In reality, Pjanic is valued at 52m euros while Arthur is estimated to be around 56m euros.
But by transferring the two players for such high value, the two clubs can better deal with balancing their books. The issues are that Pjanic’s value will only reduce overtime and his current salary will further damage the finances as the club is already struggling to keep up with wages of current superstars like Lionel Messi, Gerard Pique, Antoine Griezmann, Luis Suarez, and Marc-Andre ter Stegen. The German keeper is also due for a contract renewal with a promise of a better salary.
Bartomeu, however, is indifferent to this issue as he knows that by the time this issue arises, there will be a new Barca president, who would have to deal with this situation once they are appointed.
Are Barca moving towards dangerous times?