Dhe waiting for world footballer Robert Lewandowski and other expensive newcomers at FC Barcelona to play is becoming more and more of a nail-biter. Even one day before the heavily indebted club’s first league game of the new season on Saturday evening, it is unclear whether the former Bayern striker, as well as Jules Kounde, Raphinha, Andreas Christensen and Franck Kessie, can be used at all. The same was true for Ousmane Dembélé and Sergi Roberto, whose contracts have been renewed.
Despite selling some of their silverware, Barça have so far failed to meet the league’s financial fair play rules. To do this, the debt would have to be reduced or the salary scale reduced.
In the case of Dutch national player Frenkie de Jong, both sides are therefore fighting a mud fight. Barça are unhappy with his performance and want to sell him for as much money as possible or cut his salary. The midfielder has so far rejected both. He has already fallen out of favor with some fans. They accuse him of disloyal behavior and sometimes accost de Jong on the street.
The Barça management was recently “very worried” about a delay in the sale of another part of the club’s assets, the specialist newspaper “Mundo Deportivo” wrote on Friday. A few days ago everything seemed to be clear, 25 percent of Barça Studios should take over the company GDA Luma for 100 million euros.
But legal and administrative issues delayed the action. On Friday, the club finally confirmed the sale of a further 24.5 percent of the in-house content forge for audiovisual projects for 100 million euros, but to Orpheus Media. It was initially unclear whether it was enough for registration.
The league fears that those responsible for Barça will only submit the documents required for registration during the course of Saturday. “Mundo Deportivo” wrote that decisions of great importance would then have to be made without sufficient time to review them.
With a debt of 1.35 billion euros, the situation only partially improved with a daring anticipation of the future. US investor Sixth Street will pay 207.5 million for ten percent of the income from the league TV rights over the next 25 years. Another 15 percent should bring in over 300 million, 49.99 percent of “Barca Licensing & Merchandising” also 200 to 300 million.
That raises questions. “As you can read, Barcelona has sold its TV rights, among other things, and can obviously afford it,” said Gennaro Gattuso, new coach of FC Valencia, the “Kicker”. Although he doesn’t work for the league board, “yes, it’s difficult to explain all this, and that’s how we can definitely agree”.
The only consolation in all the confusion for the Catalans: In the first league game on Saturday at the Camp Nou (9 p.m. on DAZN) against Rayo Vallecano from Madrid, it could be possible without the top stars if necessary. However, if registration is not completed by the end of the summer transfer window, which closes in Spain on September 1, Lewandowski and Co. cannot be used at least until the winter transfer time.
Lewandowski had promised so much from his move from Bayern Munich to Spain. He was “the perfect next step in my life and my career,” said the goalscorer. At the launch, President Joan Laporta boasted of a “historic day” for Barca. He’s “not worried,” he thinks “everything is on the right track,” said Lewandowski. After all, he enjoys priority with those responsible. “If we could only register one,” Laporta said, “Robert would be the first.”
Barcelona have been making the headlines for weeks. Even Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann had his thoughts. “This is the only club in the world that has no money but buys any player they want,” he said. The energetic Laporta, who dreams of repeating the golden era of Pep Guardiola and Lionel Messi, countered. “It’s true we were in an ominous situation, but we’re back,” he claimed.