Liverpool have rejected a third offer from Barcelona for Philippe Coutinho, an offer believed to be in the region of £114m.
Barcelona technical secretary Robert Fernandez revealed on Thursday that the Catalan giants were locked in negotiations for Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele but admitted that Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund are in control of the futures of the esteemed attacking duo.
Coutinho, 25, and Dembele, 20, have both signalled their intention to move to the Camp Nou this summer and have used rather different methods to try and push through a transfer. Liverpool playmaker Coutinho submitted a transfer request via e-mail last Friday (11 August), while Borussia Dortmund starlet Dembele failed to turn up to training last week and has since been suspended by the German outfit.
Fernandez confirmed that Barcelona are in talks with Liverpool and Dortmund over the potential transfers of their star attackers and is keen to edge closer towards agreements in the coming days.
But having already seen an offer of £90m rejected, Barcelona have again been frustrated in their attempts to sign the Liverpool playmaker, BBC Sport report.
The Blaugrana are willing to pay north of £100m for the Brazil and France internationals, but Fernandez conceded that the futures of Coutinho and Dembele will be decided by Dortmund and Liverpool, who have no interest in parting with the former Inter Milan starlet.
"We are negotiating and that is the truth," Fernandez was quoted as saying by the Mirror. "With all respect to both clubs, logically in a negotiation you need time to reach agreements for them and for us.
"We still have days ahead and we would like to go forward with this. It is true and I recognise this, that they are two players (Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele) we feel like bringing here."
"Dembele and Coutinho are two important players that we like a lot and have done for a long time. They have the conditions, the right age and could adapt to our football. They would be good to have here. That's the reality.
"With respect to Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund, when there are negotiations you need time, you need to work things into a favourable situation for players and ourselves.
"We still have days ahead of us, would like to move things faster, but do admit they're two players we would like here. But it's the clubs who will have the final say on if we finally achieve those two transfers."
Barcelona have already signed Paulinho, Gerard Deulofeu, Nelson Semedo and Marlon Santos this summer but Ernesto Valverde's men is still in need of major surgery due to the departure of Neymar, who joined Paris Saint-Germain for £198m two weeks ago.
Coutinho and Dembele would go some way to remedying some of the issues that face the Catalan giants, but after recently suffering two chastening losses to Real Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup, Barca's woes are too great for the pair to completely solve, according to Luis Suarez.
"These two parties had little history and signings such as Dembele and Coutinho are not the solution," Suarez told Carrusel Deportivo.
"Barcelona have to know that united and together they have to fight to get out of this, whether or not there are new players."