Barcelona transfer news: Ernesto Valverde is set for a busy January window
Barcelona are set to endure a nervous January transfer window as they look to keep hold of two of their brightest young talents amid interest from all around Europe.
Both Ousmane Dembele and Malcom have been linked with moves away from the Nou Camp following reports the duo are unhappy at their lack of first team action this season.
Barca are currently a point clear at the top of La Liga after an initially shaky start to their title defence, although Ernesto Valverde’s side suffered a shock defeat to Real Betis last time out.
While looking to keep hold of their best assets, the Catalan giants will also undoubtedly try and strengthen – so Express Sport has rounded up some of the most likely transfers that could take place during the upcoming window.
OUT – Ousmane Dembele
The World Cup winner has been heavily linked with a move to the Premier League after failing to hold down a place at the Nou Camp following his 2017 move.
Liverpool are thought to be leading Arsenal in the race for the 21-year-old’s signature, although Barcelona have rubbished claims Dembele is leaving.
The Frenchman was reportedly disciplined for missing training last week but general manager Pep Segura has said they have no intention of selling the injury-plagued youngster.
Dembele cost Barca £96million, so it would take a pretty substantial bid to force a deal through.
Barcelona transfer news: Ousmane Dembele is struggling for game time at the Nou Camp
OUT – Malcom
Malcolm is another star reportedly unsettled at the Nou Camp after failing to break into the first team following his summer move from Bordeaux.
Tottenham are monitoring the Frenchman, who has made just two substitute appearances in La Liga so far this season.
The 21-year-old could be available for £44m, with Chelsea and Arsenal also keen on bolstering their ranks in January.
Malcom has reportedly held crunch talks with Valverde over his lack of playing time, but it is said he has just been told to work harder.
Barcelona transfer news: Malcom is attracting interest from several Premier League clubs
OUT – Denis Suarez
Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri tried to sign Suarez on three separate occasions during his time at Napoli, and could continue his pursuit in January.
The Spaniard is out of favour under Valverde, playing just once, and may be set for a return to England.
However, competition for places in central midfield at Stamford Bridge is already fierce and Suarez would not be considered a priority signing with Jorginho, N’Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic and Ross Barkley already at the club.
However, the 24-year-old is reportedly losing patience at the Nou Camp and could force a move.
Barcelona transfer news: Maurizio Sarri is a big fan of Denis Suarez
OUT – Jasper Cillessen
The Dutch stopper is considering a move away from Barcelona, having been forced to play second-fiddle to Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Cillessen is yet to play a single minute in La Liga this season and has hinted that he could be heading to pastures new.
Barcelona transfer news: Jasper Cillessen is on the way out at the Nou Camp
IN – Paul Pogba (Manchester United)
One of the most high-profile transfer sagas of recent times, with Pogba linked to both Barcelona and Juventus during a tumultuous season so far.
The French midfielder fuelled speculation of a switch to the Nou Camp after he was spotted having dinner with Lionel Messi in Dubai.
Pogba was the subject of a bid in the summer window, thought to be £45million plus Yerry Mina and Andre Gomes.
Barca’s advances were rejected but they are still thought to be keen on a move, although a January deal looks highly unlikely.
Barcelona transfer news: Paul Pogba has hinted at a move away from Manchester United
IN – Frenkie de Jong (Ajax)
The central midfielder is making a name for himself in the Eredivisie, with both Barcelona and Tottenham tracking his progress.
The versatile 21-year-old would add strength in depth to Valverde’s midfield, being able to play centrally and out wide.
De Jong has also deputised at centre-back in the past, with Barca general manager Segura admitting De Jong “has the profile” desired by the club.
Barcelona transfer news: Barca are targeting Frenkie de Jong in January
IN – Matthijs de Ligt (Ajax)
Like De Jong, De Ligt is one of the next hot properties coming off the Ajax production line and could be set for a huge switch soon.
Barca are struggling at centre-back with Samuel Umtiti hampered by injuries and Thomas Vermaelen falling short of the standard expected.
De Ligt would be a pricy acquisition but surely remains high on the list of priorities.
Barcelona transfer news: Matthijs de Ligt is expected to leave Ajax in the near future
IN – Koen Casteels (Wolfsburg)
The Belgian stopper is one of several goalkeepers on a shortlist to replace the outgoing Jasper Cillessen.
PSV ace Jeroen Zoet and Athletic Bilbao’s Alex Remiro are also being monitored as Barca look for a reliable back-up to Ter Stegen.
Remora could be a free agent next summer and is refusing to sign a new deal after being overlooked following Kepa Arrizabalaga’s departure to Chelsea.
However, Casteels is the most proven option having shone in the Bundesliga over the past few campaigns.
Barcelona transfer news: Koen Casteels is a potential replacement for Cillessen