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Eyebrows were raised when it was announced that Spanish winger Ferran Torres would be signing for cash-strapped FC Barcelona for £55million from Manchester City.
It is no secret that the Catalan giants are in the heart of a torrid time financially and battling some enormous debts.
They had to wave goodbye to forwards Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann ahead of the start of the season in order to reduce their wage bill, with other senior players having to take pay cuts in order to allow new signings to be registered.
One of them was City hero Sergio Aguero, who has since retired from professional football due to a heart issue.
But, again, Barcelona’s monetary woes have put them in a spot of bother as La Liga’s salary cap regulations means that they cannot register Torres, and thus he will be unable to play until the matter is sorted.
The 21-year-old scored nine goals in 24 appearances for City in the Premier League and looked like he may be the no.9 that Pep Guardiola was so desperate to sign in the summer.
However, the Spaniard was unwilling to stand in the way of the move after Torres made it clear he wanted to fulfil his dreams of joining Barcelona.
Speaking last weekend ahead of Barca’s match against Mallorca, which they won 1-0, manager Xavi said: “Ferran Torres is a spectacular signing, both as a player and a person," Barca boss Xavi said on Saturday.
HAVE YOUR SAY! Who else do Barcelona need to sign in January? Comment below.
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"He’s coming off an important injury, he has fantastic commitment, he’s going to give us a lot, I’ve no doubt about it. He can play in different positions, I’m very happy with the effort made by the club to get him.
“We’ll see how the salary cap situation is, if it’s possible right away. There has to be players leaving. If we get Dembele to resign his contract and lower his pay it will allow us to sign Torres and we hope that it can happen.
“His greatest virtue is his personality, he’s very ambitious, excited, implicated with a high commitment, you can see it in his eyes. The mentality he has is tremendous, hopefully, you will be able to see it soon.”
Dembele has been linked with a move away from Nou Camp over the past few months, though there is an aura of confidence from Xavi that he feels it is inevitable that the Frenchman will extend his stay at the club. If so, it remains to be seen whether the 24-year-old is willing to take a wage cut so his employers can register Torres.
- La Liga
- Barcelona FC
- Manchester City FC
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