Barcelona made quite a lot of news on transfer deadline day. They have had to navigate a tough few months and it remains to be seen just how much they’ll suffer in the aftermath of it. The club’s wage bill has been trimmed but Joan Laporta and co. haven’t been able to offload all the players they wanted to get off their books.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the top stories involving Barcelona from 1 September 2021.
Lionel Messi’s number 10 shirt given to Ansu Fati
Amid calls to retire the number 10 shirt that Lionel Messi wore at the club, Barcelona have passed it down to youngster Ansu Fati. The 18-year-old is one of the brightest young prospects in football and had enjoyed a stellar start to the 2020-21 season.
He was unfortunate to have subsequently picked up a knee injury which saw him miss out on the majority of the season. Fati is nearing a return to full recovery and will don the number 10 shirt when he steps out to play next.
In the 2020-21 season, Ansu Fati scored five goals and provided four assists in 10 appearances across La Liga and the Champions League.
Emerson Royal joins Tottenham Hotspur
Tottenham Hotspur have signed Barcelona right-back Emerson Royal on a five-year deal. Spurs will reportedly pay Barcelona £25 million in transfer fees. 20% of that fee will go to Emerson’s former club Real Betis. Barcelona had signed the youngster on a permanent basis from Real Betis at the start of the summer for €9 million.
The 22-year-old has put pen to paper on a new five-year deal with Spurs. Emerson started Barcelona’s latest league game against Getafe. But with Sergino Dest likely to remain first-choice at right-back, Barcelona were happy to offload Emerson for a fee.
Antoine Griezmann joins Atletico Madrid
Antoine Griezmann has returned to his former club Atletico Madrid in the most shocking deal of transfer deadline day. Despite affirmations to the contrary, Barcelona agreed an initial loan deal with an option to extend it by a year and an obligation to buy for €40 million.
Atletico Madrid will furnish Griezmann’s wages in total. They will pay an initial loan fee of €10 million. Since joining Barcelona in 2019, Griezmann has scored 35 goals and provided 17 assists in 102 appearances across all competitions.
Griezmann was linked with Atletico Madrid throughout the summer. Barcelona even tried to engineer swap deals involving Saul Niguez and Joao Felix in exchange for the Frenchman. But ultimately, the two clubs decided to do a deal involving just the 30-year-old.
Barcelona sign Luuk de Jong on loan
Barcelona have signed Sevilla striker Luuk de Jong on a season-long loan deal. The Catalans won’t pay a loan fee but will pay De Jong’s wages in full. Barcelona have the option to make the deal permanent at the end of the season.
The 31-year-old striker scored just nine goals in 48 appearances across all competitions for the Andalusians last term. He had fallen down the pecking order and Sevilla have been looking to find a potential suitor for him.
Barcelona reportedly made moves for Manchester United‘s Edinson Cavani and Atletico Madrid’s Joao Felix before settling on the Dutchman. Ronald Koeman has remained keen to bolster his frontline following the departure of Lionel Messi.
With Griezmann also leaving the club on deadline day, it was necessary for Barcelona to sign a backup striker.