Ousmane Dembele reportedly rejected a new contract offer by Barcelona on January deadline day.
The Frenchman was linked with a move to the Premier League as Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur were keen on his services. However, his exorbitant wage demands eventually meant he stayed put at Camp Nou.
Ligue 1 side PSG were also interested in signing Dembele on deadline day, and had reached a verbal agreement to sign him.
However, the Parisians needed to sell someone to make way for Dembele in order to comply with the FFP rules. Eventually, no one from the PSG squad wanted to go the other way, so a deal could not be struck.
Barca had tried to offer Dembele a new deal worth €14million-a-year, but it fell below his demands of a hefty €40million-a-year contract.
Following the contract standoff, it’s likely that Dembele will not be reintegrated into the first team by manager Xavi.
Barcelona star Dembele’s wage demands might detract teams from signing him
Ousmane Dembele has had a troubled spell at Barcelona. While injuries have not been kind to the Frenchman, his disciplinary issues have also shackled him.
Having emerged as one of the best young talents at Borussia Dortmund, Dembele has failed to shine on a consistent basis at Nou Camp.
At just 24, he has had too many debilitating injuries, which is alarming. Although he is supremely talented, his wage demands are too high for a player who misses too many games owing to injuries.
Barcelona’s director of football Mateu Alemany had revealed earlier in January that Dembele would be sold:
“It seems obvious to us that the player does not want to continue at here and is not committed to Barca’s future project. We told him and his agents that he must leave the club immediately because we want to have players committed to the project.”
A contract U-turn on deadline day was perhaps a move to protect his value as losing him for free would be a financial loss for the Catalans.
It remains to be seen how the situation will pan out in the coming months.
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Dembele has registered 31 goals and 23 assists in 129 games for the Nou Camp side.