Barcelona finished without a trophy across the 2021-22 season, and now it’s up to the Catalan giants to retool for a revitalized campaign next season.
The club made a strong second-half push and secured Champions League play for next season, saving face for an otherwise fruitless campaign.
Still, there are many questions to answer. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was a fresh face in January and provided a shrewd acquisition, finding his best form at the Camp Nou and helping Barcelona to a second-place finish in the league. Still, Aubameyang is 34 years old and could be on his last legs.
Ousmane Dembele is out of contract and could leave the club this summer on a free transfer, and there are rumors of an upgrade needed in midfield.
The biggest elephant in the room for Barcelona is the ongoing financial situation at the club. It’s generally held that the club is in a dire financial position, and must generate most of its transfer funds by outgoing player sales of nearly equal value. This will be something for both the club and fans to keep in mind as Barcelona navigate the transfer window, and lower-value transfers could become a priority given the financial position of the club.
The Sporting News is rounding up the key updates — every day, every day — below.
BARCELONA CONFIRMED DEALS: Transfers in | Transfer out | Updated squad list
Latest Barcelona transfer news
Last update: June 11
Bernardo Silva drops Barcelona transfer hint
Manchester City schemer Bernardo Silva has indicated he could be open to leaving Pep Guardiola’s side this summer.
Barcelona have been linked with a move for the Portuguese international, despite its importance to City, and the former Benfica star admitted his future remains unresolved.
“Unfortunately, I cannot answer about my future, as I’m with the national team and super focused on the game that remains”, as per O Jogo. “When the season ends, we’ll see what happens.”
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano claims a meeting between Silva’s agent Jorge Mendes and Blaugrana boss Xavi included discussions over a possible swoop for the 27-year-old.
Been told the main name mentioned in the meeting between Barcelona and Jorge Mendes yesterday night was Bernardo Silva. Xavi, big fan. 🇵🇹 #FCB
Man City will set a huge price tag for Bernardo. It’s not a possible deal for Barça, as of now – only in case Frenkie de Jong leaves.
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) June 9, 2022
Barcelona and Juventus battle for Ilkay Gundogan
Barcelona could switch their attention to City star Ilkay Gundogan ahead of the 2022/23 season despite interest in him from Serie A giants Juventus.
Xavi is aiming to reinforce his squad in the coming weeks, with reports from German outlet Bild claiming he is monitoring Gundogan.
Gundogan has been linked with a move away from the Etihad Stadium — despite scoring the two goals which clinched the Premier League title — with his contract expiring in 2023.
🎙️ “ILKAY GUNDOGAN YOU LITTLE DANCER!!” 🕺
Manchester City turn it around at the Etihad!! WOW!! pic.twitter.com/4tRqwuvJUj
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) May 22, 2022
The 31-year-old wants a consistent starting spot ahead of the 2022 World Cup with his rotating role at City a source of frustration for the former Borussia Dortmund man.
Any move for Gundogan is only likely to proceed if Dutch star Frenkie de Jong opts to leave, with Manchester United tracking him.
Ferran Torres rejected Real Madrid switch
Ferran Torres has revealed he turned down a move to Real Madrid earlier in his career.
The Spaniard has opened up on his first season back in La Liga, after leaving Manchester City in January, and he is confident about Xavi’s project at the Camp Nou.
“I could have stayed at City and won many titles, but I wanted a new challenge. Signing for Barcelona is an honor, and when Xavi calls, it’s a no brainer”, he said via Marca.
“That Robert Lewandowski is motivated to come to Barcelona is a source of pride. I hope he reaches an agreement and joins.
“When I was young I had several opportunities to sign for Real Madrid, but it was not the time. One offer was during the World Cup, but I went into the Valencia first team, and I think it has been good.
“With the other offers, I gave more importance to being closer to home and to staying with my family.”
Barcelona linked with Villarreal star Gerard Moreno
Barcelona are lining up backup plans if they fail to secure a deal for Bayern Munich superstar Robert Lewandowski this summer.
Polish hitman Lewandowski has been heavily linked with a move to the Camp Nou but the Bavarians are likely to fight hard to retain their star man.
According to reports from Diario Sport, the Blaugrana have now set their sights elsewhere as a contingency, with Villarreal’s Gerard Moreno an option for Xavi.
Moreno’s current release clause stands at €100m (£85.4m/$107m) but the Yellow Submarine could accept half that figure after missing out on a Champions League qualification spot for next season.
Lewandowski to ask for move
The relationship between club and player has completely broken down, with Lewandowski saying “my story with Bayern has come to an end.” Bayern CEO Oliver Kahn, not happy with this definitive public statement, hit back saying, “why Robert has chosen this path, I cannot tell you. Appreciation is not a one-way street.” According to Spanish publication Sport, Lewandowski has decided he will hold out during Bayern Munich preseason.
Latest UPDATE (June 6): Lewandowski is still pushing for a move, saying “something has died in me, I want to leave Bayern to have more emotions in my life.” two days prior, Roman Fabrizio reported that Lewandowski has a verbal agreement for a three-year deal at Barcelona.
Barcelona have been considered the frontrunners for Lewandowski’s signature for months, but according to La Liga boss Javier Tebas in late May, the Catalan club must “sell assets and earn more [revenue]” in order to make a big splash such as this. “Today, they cannot sign him,” Tebas said, referring to Lewandowski.
Dembele in new contract talks
Ousmane Dembele is out of contract this summer, and while in January it seemed sure the Frenchman would leave the club, his excellent form through the second half of the season has seen Barcelona apparently reconsider its position.
Still, with Dembele now able to talk with other clubs freely, Barcelona are forced to compete on the open market to re-sign its 25-year-old wide man. If Dembele leaves, it could spark multiple rumors for other wingers as a replacement, such as Raphinha of Leeds United.
Latest UPDATE (June 6): While ESPN reported in April that the two sides had reopened contract talks, Barcelona now have to compete on the open market, and that could prove difficult. Spanish publication Sport reports that PSG have pulled out of signing Dembele, leaving just Chelsea and Barcelona as the remaining options. Mundo Deportivo, meanwhile, reports that Barcelona are also beginning to think about pulling out of negotiations with Dembele, having already submitted a last contract offer that will not be increased.
Neves to join from Wolves?
Midfield is a position of need for Barcelona, and 25-year-old Wolves star Ruben Neves is possibly seeking an upgrade with his contract up in two years. The Portuguese international has been a star at the holding midfield position for years in the Premier League and could flourish at Barcelona when surrounded by talent. Wolves will likely demand a hefty transfer fee for the club’s most valuable player.
Latest UPDATE (June 6): Spanish publication Sport reported in late April that agent Jorge Mendes is working on a deal to get Neves to Barcelona, and they recently have pushed that further. Sport (as passed on by SportWitness) has now reported that because Wolves’ valuation of Neves (€50 million) is out of cash-strapped Barcelona’s range, the Spanish side has offered Riqui Puig, Oscar Mingueza and Martin Braithwaite as make-goods in a deal, but the only player that interests Wolves is Nico Gonzalez.
Will Frenkie de Jong leave?
Dutch midfielder Frenkie de Jong has settled into an everyday role at Barcelona, but there has been massive speculation that the club could sacrifice de Jong as a valuable asset in order to raise the funds necessary for other transfers. De Jong himself stated that he would “prefer to stay with Barcelona,” but he could be pushed to leave if a worthwhile deal arrives.
Latest UPDATE (June 6): According to Spanish publication Sport, Manchester United have sanctioned the funds necessary to complete a deal for de Jong, but the biggest hurdle remaining is convincing the player to leave Barcelona.
Raphinha to arrive from Leeds United?
Leeds United are weighing up whether to sell Raphinha this summer, with the 25-year-old Brazilian a wanted man and only two more years left on his contract. Still, the departure of Raphinha would significantly deplete the talent in the squad, and after just eking out victory in a relegation battle this past season, that could prove costly.
Latest UPDATE (June 5): According to Fabrizio Romano, Leeds will only consider selling Raphinha on two “conditions” previously laid out: That it nets a €55 million ($59m / £47m) profit, and that the payment be made in one installment. That will anger Barcelona who have very little financial flexibility this summer.
Barcelona Transfers: Summer 2022 transfer window
|June 30||Luuk de Jong||ST||30||Seville||Return of loan|
Below is the updated Barcelona first-team roster. New additions during the summer 2022 window are noted in bold:
Goalkeepers (3): Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Neto, Arnau Tenas
Defenders (10): Jordi Alba (LB), Dani Alves (RB), Ronald Araujo (CB), Alex Balde (LB), Sergino Dest (RB), Eric Garcia (CB), Clement Lenglet (CB), Oscar Mingueza (CB), Gerard Pique (CB), Samuel Umtiti (CB).
Midfielders (7): Sergio Busquets (DM), Frenkie de Jong (CM), Pedri (CM), Gavi (CM), Nico Gonzalez (CM), Riqui Puig (CM), Sergi Roberto (CM).
Forwards (8): Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (CF), Martin Braithwaite (CF), Ousmane Dembele (RW), Memphis Depay (CF), Ansu Fati (LW), Ferran Torres (RW), Adama Traore (RW)
CB = center back; LB = left back; RB = right-back; CM = central midfielder; CAM = attacking midfielder; CF = center forward; LW = left wing; RW = right wing
The current Barcelona projected first-choice starting lineup, when completely healthy, currently looks like:
Barcelona projected starting XI (4-3-3, left to right): Ter Stegen (GK) — Alba, Pique, Araujo, Alves — F. de Jong, Busquets, Pedri — Torres, Aubameyang, Dembele.