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Weekly Review: Week 28 ǀ FC Barcelona failure on all fronts

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We’re almost three weeks into the 2011 summer transfer window and there’s still no sight of any major signing, not that one is needed though. But it is indeed troubling that FC Barcelona only seems to be interested in attack-minded players. Among the high-profile, and even more expensive targets - Udinese’s Alexis Sanchez, Arsenal FC’s Cesc Fabregas and Santos’s Neymar. But neither appears to be any closer to a move to Catalunya. The latest report from Brazil suggests that FC Barcelona is preparing an audacious €50 million swoop for Santos’ wonderkid Neymar, in 2012. The plan is to fend off the interest of eternal rivals Real Madrid for the youngsters’ signature. As long as Los Blancos don’t get him FC Barcelona’s higher ups are prepared to participate in insanity.

Why insanity? Apparently FC Barcelona is willing to pay the big bucks for players, either to spite rival clubs (Real Madrid) or succumb to the outrageous demands of a single party (Udinese). Where does that leave Arsenal FC and Cesc Fabregas? Not anywhere close to an agreement. Out of the three transfer targets, Arsenal FC’s Cesc Fabregas is the only one who’s definitely worth his asking price – a whopping €45 million. And that’s Neymar’s Santos release clause. Udinese’s Alexis Sanchez will not leave for anything less than €40 million.



Lowballing Arsenal FC over a transfer fee for their captain/best player but succumbing to the outrageous demands of Santos and Udinese – that’s an epic failure. Udinese’ aren’t automatically qualified for the upcoming Champions League campaign. At this point it’s 50/50. The sale of Alexis Sanchez would definitely generate revenue and prevent the club from keeping a potentially unhappy player.

At any rate, how is FC Barcelona going to pay in excess of €40 million on two players, Cesc Fabregas and Alexis Sanchez in a single transfer window? Not to mention, the official budget is just slightly more than that.  

If FC Barcelona’s transfer kitty is limited to some €40 million, why doesn’t the club buy a world-class center-back? Why doesn’t FC Barcelona release dead weight like Gabriel Milito for free? In the past, Thierry Henry and Rafa Marquez were granted a release, why not Milito? He isn’t a world-class player, at least not anymore. And he is on massive wages, somewhere in the neighborhood of €5 million.

Speaking of Argentines’ plying their trade for FC Barcelona, all of them crashed out of the Copa del Rey at the boots of Uruguay. But for once it wasn’t Lionel Messi’s fault; technically speaking it was Carlos Tevez who can be held accountable for La Albiceleste’s premature exit from the tournament. But there’s a silver lining to it – Javier Mascherano, Lionel Messi and yes, Gabriel Milito will return from the Copa America without any major injury. With six competitions to be played in 2011/2012 it’s better for Lionel Messi & Co. to return ahead of schedule and recover from last seasons’ grueling campaign.

Carlos Tevez wasted a penalty kick ousts Argentina's hopes in the Copa America 2011


Yours truly,



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