Barcelona defender Andreas Christensen is drawing interest from several Premier League teams, sources at the Catalan club have told ESPN.
Christensen, 26, is enjoying a fine debut campaign with Barca after arriving as a free agent Chelsea last summer and a source close to the player said he has no intention of leaving.
– Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (US)
Barca do not want to let the Denmark international leave, either, but sources would not go as far as to completely rule out an exit due to the club’s delicate financial situation.
The Blaugrana need to shave more than €150 million from their outgoings this summer to comply with LaLiga‘s fair play rules and be able to register the new contracts already signed by Gavi, Ronald Araujo and Marcos Alonso.
The quickest way to raise funds would be to bring in a big transfer fee, although they would prefer to keep all of their best players as they continue to rebuild under Xavi Hernandez.
Christensen has emerged as a key figure in Xavi’s team this season, but sources said the club could face a dilemma should a big financial offer arrive from England.
Any transfer fee received for Christensen would count as direct profit, given he joined for nothing when his Chelsea contract expired last June.
The same sources added that Frank Kessie‘s situation is similar. The Ivory Coast The midfielder joined as a free agent from Serie A side AC Milan.
Kessie, 26, has not enjoyed as many minutes as Christensen this season but has gained prominence in recent weeks, scoring the winning goal in the recent 2-1 win. Clasico win over Real Madrid That moved Barca 12 points clear at the top of LaLiga.
As with Christensen, Barca do not plan to move Kessie on, but sources said they would have to study any serious bids that arrived.
Despite the doubts surrounding their financial position with LaLiga and what they can afford this summer, Barca are moving ahead with plans to strengthen ahead of next season.
ESPN reported on Wednesday that there is already a verbal agreement in place to sign defender Inigo Martinez And that negotiations continue with the midfielder Ilkay Gundogan.
Both players would arrive as free agents when their respective contracts with Athletic Club and Manchester City expire in June — pending Barca being able to cut their spending.
Therefore, players will have to leave first. Sources have told ESPN that Barca first want to explore the market for fringe players, including Ferran Torres, Ansu Fati — whose father fumed this week about his lack of minutes — and even Raphinhawho has performed well in Ousmane Dembele‘s absence.
The problem with moving on Ferran or Raphinha is that both players arrived for over €50m, so any fee would not count solely as profit, in contrast to Christensen and Kessie.
Ansu’s future, meanwhile, is the subject of much debate inside the Catalan club. There are those who think he deserves more time to prove himself after recovering from a series of injury problems, while others are open to letting him go if a good offer comes in.