Barcelona's £46.7 million move for Ferran Torres is causing them more trouble than they expected, and it is more than just because of their financial issues that are stopping them from registering the player. The problem is with Ousmane Dembele and his representatives, who are now demanding an improved contract and to be given special treatment like the former Manchester City forward.
After months of negotiations without a breakthrough, Dembele had finally agreed to commit his long-term future to Barcelona, but the Ferran Torres deal saw him back out of his commitment. The France international's camp is now demanding a new deal with improved terms after learning about the funds available to the club.
Barcelona's director of football Matheu Alemany recently revealed that there will be no further meetings with Dembele. He confirmed that there is an offer on the table and they are waiting on a response from the Frenchman's camp, and they are keen to conclude talks at the earliest.
According to Sport, Dembele's agents do not see it that way, and feel the ball is now in Barcelona's court after their recent rejection. The 2018 World Cup winner has just six months remaining on his contract and is now allowed to talk to clubs outside Spain with a view to agreeing a pre-contract to join them on a free in the summer.
The 24-year-old is negotiating from a position of power, and is in no hurry to cede to Barcelona's pressure to sign a new deal. The Catalan club want the speedy winger to take a pay cut to help ease their financial problems, but he is currently not in agreement despite his preference to stay at the Camp Nou.
Xavi has urged Dembele to sign a new deal and remain with the Catalan capital club beyond the summer of 2022, but the club is aware that there is considerable interest from clubs across Europe for his signature. If Barcelona fail to agree a deal, the French attacker is being courted by the likes of Manchester United, Chelsea and Juventus among others.