Barcelona president Joan Laporta has confirmed that the club cannot currently afford to compete in the ongoing transfer sagas surrounding Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe.
For most of this season, Laporta has been adamant that cash-strapped Barça were in the mix for Haaland, who comes with a release clause worth close to £70m, some enormous wage demands and hefty agents fees.
As for Mbappe, those rumours have come out of nowhere and always seemed a little far-fetched, and Laporta has even confirmed as much already.
Nevertheless, he continues to be asked about signing both forwards, and in a recent interview with RAC1, Laporta confessed that Barcelona are well behind in the race to sign either player.
“If I had to choose [between Haaland and Mbappe], I would choose whichever made it clear they wanted to come to Barça,” he explained. “If they don’t feel like it, it will be difficult.
“The economic conditions that I’ve been told these two deals would cost…we’d never accept to spend those figures. No way. I see both of them really far from Barça.”
Barcelona’s ambitious back-up to both, Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah, is hardly going to be cheaper, and it has already been revealed that the La Liga side are looking to cut their costs even more this summer.
Sergio Busquets, Gerard Pique and Jordi Alba will be asked to agree to wage cuts or deferrals at the end of the season, while a handful of other squad players will be pushed out the exit door if all goes to plan.
Neto, Sergi Roberto, Samuel Umtiti, Clement Lenglet, Oscar Mingueza, Riqui Puig, Martin Braithwaite and Luuk de Jong are all expected to be allowed to leave, while final decisions need to be made on Memphis Depay and Wolves loanee Adama Traore, whose deal could be made permanent if Francisco Trincao goes in the opposite direction.