Ousmane Dembele Opens Talks With Four Clubs To Leave FC Barcelona

Ousmane Dembele has opened talks with four different clubs and could leave FC Barcelona in the summer if his low release clause is activated, according to reports.

The Frenchman looked set to do this a year ago when refusing to sign an extension on the five-season deal he penned when joining from Borussia Dortmund in a €105mn ($112.5mn) plus incentives transfer in 2017.

Instead of sending him to the stands for the rest of the 2021/2022 campaign until his deal expired, however, Xavi Hernandez took the Qatar 2022 finalist under his wing.

The legendary midfielder who is now the Blaugrana’s head coach has managed to exact top form from the winger, and has overseen his rise to become one of Europe’s top providers of assists with a goalscoring threat to match.

It was Xavi’s influence that encouraged Dembele to agree fresh terms that have him tied down until 2024, yet his deal contains a release clause for 2023 only that can be activated for a paltry €50mn ($53.6mn).

According to El Nacional, this has put a string of top continental clubs on alert – four of which have already opened talks with the 26-year-old’s agent Moussa Sissoko to register their interest in the ambidextrous attacker.

The first of these is Chelsea, who were said to have an agreement in place with Dembele when still managed by his former Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel and have money to burn under new owner Todd Boehly.

Elsewhere in the Premier
League, Barca’s opponents in the Europa League on Thursday – Manchester United – are also said to be keeping tabs on Dembele considering they could lose Alejandro Garnacho and Jadon Sancho’s patchy form.

Across the English Channel, Paris Saint Germain are said to worry president Joan Laporta and his board as they are believed to be the most serious about landing Dembele to partner his Les Bleus teammate Kylian Mbappe.

Lastly, Bayern Munich are also keen to try and get Dembele to return to the Bundesliga if the opportunity arises, despite being linked to Ansu Fati.

Though Sissoko is right to entertain offers for his client and act in his interests, it still seems difficult to see that Dembele will leave the club.

Happy under Xavi and an integral part of the team as shown by Gavi’s viral goal celebration against Sevilla, the ‘Mosquito’ is settled in Barcelona and was finally beginning to live up to his promise before a thigh injury at Girona sidelined him for five weeks.

The best Laporta and company can do is get their house in order and prioritise another extension for Dembele once La Liga’s salary cap and Financial Fair Play rules have been successfully navigated.

Set to enjoy the match against United as a spectator, Dembele should return to action for the March 19th Clasico against Real Madrid.

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