Ousmane Dembele will stay if he agrees to a salary cut
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With the arrival of Xavi on the bench, Barcelona came to life, and Ousmane Dembele also came to life. The young Frenchman has been injured more often than in the game since arriving from Borussia Dortmund in 2017 for 105,000,000 euros, plus another 40,000,000 through bonuses, but the situation has changed in recent months.
Despite the statement of the president of the Catalan club, Joan Laporta, that due to the negative attitude towards the extension of the contract, Dembele will not play for Barcelona until the end of the season, when he becomes a free agent, Xavi insisted that the 24-year-old striker compete with the team.
Laporta gave in, and the Frenchman returned with seven assists and one goal in seven appearances since the beginning of 2022, of which he played only 90 minutes once. Dembele's excellent games have alleviated the dissatisfaction among the fans, and the Spanish media are increasingly writing about the increase in the chances of staying at the club.
Xavi's wish is not disputable, but allegedly Dembele himself is telling his teammates more and more about it. However, there is no official statement on that topic, and that is exactly what irritates the Barcelona leadership.
The last offer that the Catalans sent to their attacker had a deadline of December 20 last year, but there was no reaction. Neither Dembele spoke out, nor his manager Sissoko, which was interpreted as a rejection, so Laporta asked the former Borussia Dortmund player not to play anymore.
In the meantime, the President of Barcelona himself changed the board and spoke about Dembele in a conciliatory tone. Mundo Deportivo, however, claims that the leading people of the club are divided opinions about the football player who cost Barcelona a fortune.
They believe that he always had support at Camp Nou when he was injured - which happened too often - and that his behavior was often unprofessional and disrespectful, especially considering how much he was paid.
Therefore, both Mundo Deportivo and Marca write that Barcelona sent a new message to Dembele, and then it says that if he really wants to stay at the club as he allegedly tells his teammates and coach, then he must inform the club management, not through intermediaries or the media.
At the same time, regardless of the excellent parties in recent times, the new offer remains the item that he will have to agree to a salary reduction, which implies a new limit introduced due to financial problems. If Ousmane Dembele and Barcelona agree to continue cooperation, it could affect Leeds' Raphinha, as well as Adama Traore, who was brought on loan from Wolverhampton this winter.
More precisely, there is little chance that the former will be hired and the latter will stay at Camp Nou. For a start, Marca writes, the Catalans expect Dembele and his manager to invite them to schedule a new meeting.