Barcelona announced the signing of Paco Alcácer on Tuesday, and Blaugrana fans are certainly excited to see one of the best prospects in Spain join the club as the fourth forward and backup to the 'MSN' trio, which makes the Barça attacking front perhaps the strongest in the world.
But the road to the announcement was certainly a nervous one. Barça waited until the penultimate day of the summer transfer window to make the signing official, and quite a few fans are asking themselves what took the club so long. After a discussion with sources close to the situation, we got a few fascinating details.
According to sources, the deal between Barça and Valencia was already agreed on Thursday night, and both clubs began to draw up the paperwork to make the transfer official and send it to the FIFA system for registration. Barça was obviously quite quick to do their part as the happiest part of the business, but Valencia stalled a little bit.
Why? While owner Peter Lim was ready to sign the papers and announce everything on Friday, the board did not allow it because they would not let the deal go through unless they had a guaranteed replacement for Alcácer. There was risk of the transfer not being completed because of this, so Barça went to work on Munir El-Haddadi.
The young striker was ready to join Celta Vigo on loan, but as Valencia's attempts to find a striker failed, they wanted Munir. Not as part of the Alcácer deal (that was already agreed upon and done), but as Alcácer's replacement. It took a little bit of convincing, but Munir finally agreed with Barça to move to Valencia. He rejected Celta, Schalke 04 and Tottenham Hotspur, who pursued him during the weekend, to join Valencia and help Barça complete the Alcácer transfer.
Munir's confirmation came on Sunday after the La Liga match against Athletic Bilbao, and the paperwork was finally signed by all parties involved (Alcácer, Barça, Valencia, Munir, everyone).
Then Monday came, all medicals were done throughout the day, and the clubs were able to announce both deals early Tuesday.
Transfers are really fascinating.