As the clock ticked to 12:01 am, Ousmane Dembélé’s release clause increased from €50 to €100 million. If Barcelona have to lose Dembélé, and it looks like they will lose Dembélé, at least they’ll receive the entire transfer fee.
Barcelona are willing to negotiate with PSG, but they have set a 5-day window for negotiation, if a deal fails to be agreed upon, PSG will be forced to pay the entire €100 million release clause or give up on Dembélé completely.
Dembélé has reportedly already agreed to join PSG. Still, the French winger chose not to activate his release clause, either through some last-ditch piece of loyalty or through an understanding that with the clock ticking, there just wasn’t enough time to get all the paperwork through the La Liga offices.
That means that Barcelona will receive 100% of the transfer fee. Had Dembele activated his €50 million release clause, €25 million would have been given to Barca with the other €25 million going to Dembele and his agent Moussa Sissoko.
Under the new La Liga fair play regulations, 50% of the fee Barca received could have been used on incoming players, which makes just €12.5 million.
Even if Barcelona end up selling Dembele for €50 anyway, with the whole fee landing in Catalonia, €25 million could be used on incoming players. A big difference.
According to Mundo Deportivo Barcelona has set PSG a deadline of 5 days to agree to a deal. If no deal is agreed at the end of that timeframe, Barca will refuse to accept anything other than the new €100 million release clause.
It’s widely expected that PSG and Barca will come to an agreement, and the deal will be worth more than €50 million. I would be looking at between €60-€70 million considering his contract expires next summer.
Xavi tried his best to convince Dembele to stay
It was widely believed that Dembele was very happy at Barca and had told Xavi he was looking forward to helping the club achieve Champions League glory, then all of a sudden he has this passionate desire to join a team who’ve never lifted the trophy.
According to another report in Mundo Deportivo, Xavi told Dembele to remember what happened with Neymar when he left under a cloud and then wanted to return.
Xavi has always defended the French winger in the face of some media criticism and has been one of his vocal advocates for remaining at Barca. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem enough for Dembele.