Barcelona have confirmed the return of Adria Ortola to the Nou Camp following a loan spell at Alaves. The 23-year-old is expected to serve as third-choice goalkeeper for Ernesto Valverde in the coming 2017-18 season after the club decided not to renew the contract of Jordi Masip.
Ortola joined Barcelona from Villarreal in the summer of 2013 in order to play for their second team. The Catalan custodian spent three seasons with the reserves before the La Liga giants decided to send him on loan to Alaves last summer to give him a first experience in the top flight.
The Spaniard only made eight appearances for the Basque side during the whole 2016-2017 campaign, serving as the back-up for Fernando Pacheco.
However, Barcelona have still decided to recall him amid the expected departure of current third 'keeper Masip.
"FC Barcelona have informed Adrià Ortolà he will be returning to the club after spending last season on loan to Deportivo Alavés. The 23-year-old has a contract with FCB until 30 June 2020," the club have confirmed.
The La Liga giants have not officially confirmed the release of Masip but the 28-year-old is out of contract on 30 June and everything indicates that his time at the Nou Camp is over.
Ortola is therefore expected to fill that gap under Valverde, serving as a back-up for Marc Andre Ter Stegen and Jasper Cillessen.
However, Ortola, unlike Masip, could alternate between the first-team and the reserves next season after Gerard Lopez's side secured the promotion to the second division of Spanish football last weekend.
Barcelona are yet to make any major signings since the appointment of Valverde. However, earlier in June, the Catalans confirmed that they had activated an option to make Marlon Santos' loan move from Fluminense permanent.
The Brazilian centre-back, like Ortola, is also expected to be added to Valverde's first-team squad ahead of the new season alongside the options of Gerard Pique, Javier Mascherano and Samuel Umtiti.
Both Jeremy Mathieu and Thomas Vermaelen have reportedly been deemed surplus to requirements and are tipped to leave the Nou Camp before the beginning of the campaign.