Earlier this week Atlético striker Joao Felix made headlines by confirming his desire to play for Barcelona. Since that moment we’ve seen countless reports suggesting the deal is close, which always seemed wide of the mark.
A new report by SPORT suggests that any potential move for Félix is a non-starter based on two factors.
The first is the economic situation at Barcelona with the La Liga side needing to register both their new players and the contract renewals for young stars like Alejandro Balde and Lamine Yamel.
The second is the fact that Barca manager Xavi really doesn’t see the need for Felix, especially when you consider the financial implications.
According to the report by Ferran Correas, Xavi sees Felix as an out-and-out striker rather than a midfielder who can help create more chances and link midfield with attack.
Félix scored just 4 goals in 16 Premier League appearances for Chelsea last season, and returned to Athletico Madrid training this summer, despite experiencing a frosty relationship with Diego Simeone.
Felix has largely played as a second striker, scoring 35 goals in 119 appearances at that position. He’s also chipped in with 20 assists. That’s a goal every 3.4 games and an assist every 5.9 games.
Bernardo Silva is still the priority for Xavi and Barcelona
Xavi has long been an admirer of Manchester City midfielder Bernardo Silva, and that’s the kind of signing he wants Joan Laporta to make.
Based on the current crop of players at the manager’s disposal, the need for an inside midfielder who can spot that final pass is more important than another striker.
Especially when you consider the arrival of Brazilian starlet Vitor Roque in the next 12 months.
Silva has a wealth of experience playing multiple positions, and his versatility only increases his value to Xavi and Barcelona.
Silva has played 50+ games in four different positions, those being as an attacking midfielder (125 games), right winger (116 games), central midfielder (107 games) and right midfielder (70 games).
He’s also made appearances as a centre forward, left midfielder, left winger, second striker and defensive midfielder.
If Barca hopes to entice Silva to Catalonia, they’ll need to make a major sale first, such as Ferran Torres or Franck Kessie.