Barcelona are expected to push on with their plans to offload forwards Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho this summer in an attempt to trim their wage budget.
The club’s enormous wage budget has contributed to rising debts at Camp Nou which are currently believed to sit at close to the £1bn mark, with fans growing frustrated at the lack of production from their most-expensive players.
Slashing salaries is thought to be high on president Joan Laporta’s agenda, and El Confidencial state that club officials have sat down to discuss the future of every player in the squad to work out whether they should be made available for transfer.
In the first list are the untouchable players – Lionel Messi, Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Ansu Fati, Pedri and Ilaix Moriba – but when it comes to players who might be on the chopping block, Griezmann and Coutinho are right at the very top of the list.
Barcelona have been impressed with Griezmann and do not doubt his football ability, but his 29 goals in 88 appearances hasn’t exactly set the world alight, and it’s left Barcelona feeling as though they’re not getting value for money from the Frenchman.
However, according to Catalunya Radio, Griezmann wants to stay at Camp Nou and is ignoring all the speculation about his future. He still has three years remaining on his contract and is calm about his future.
After dealing with Griezmann’s future, club officials will turn their attention to Coutinho, who has also failed to live up to expectations at the club since joining from Liverpool in 2018.
There have also been discussions about the future of centre-back Samuel Umtiti, who has been on the chopping block since the dawn of time, while Barcelona are also prepared to listen to offers for winger Francisco Trincao.
The 21-year-old has always been seen as one for the future, but club officials are believed to be keen to use agent Jorge Mendes’ connections around Europe to find a buyer to give them a chance to make a quick profit.
If they can sell these fringe players, Barcelona plan to reinvest the money in Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland, around whom Laporta is determined to build his squad.