Memphis Depay could be unveiled as a Barcelona player by the end of this week after the La Liga heavyweights agreed a transfer fee with Lyon for the Dutchman. Depay will become the first signing of new Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman. Depay has already played under Koeman in the Netherlands national team and will hope he can settle quickly as the club aims to come out of a crisis and take themselves to the perch again. Barcelona ended the last season without a trophy for the first time since 2007-08 and have gone through a massive crisis with club captain and talismanic player Lionel Messi forced to stay despite expressing his desire to leave. Barcelona Transfer News: Memphis Depay Set to Sign With Catalan Side.
According to a report from De Telegraaf, Barcelona and Lyon have reached an agreement to sell Depay for €30 million of which €25 million will be paid upfront and €5 million in add-ons. Manchester United, who had sold the 26-year-old to Lyon in 2017, have passed the opportunity to exercise the buy-back-clause leaving Barcelona free to make their first signing of this summer. Lionel Messi Shares Video Showcasing His 20-Year Love Affair With Barcelona After Deciding To Stay With Catalan Giants.
Depay had moved to Old Trafford in 2014 under another Dutchman Louis van Gaal but fared poorly and was sold to Lyon three years later. He scored just seven goals in 53 matches for the Red Devils. The Dutch forward, however, seems to have once again discovered his mojo at the French club where he has scored 57 goals in 140 appearances.
Koeman reportedly sees Depay as Barcelona’s new No 9 with Luis Suarez asked to find a new club. The Uruguayan has, however, refused to leave Camp Nou unless the club payout his fine year contract. Suarez, 33, has been criticized for his decline in form but the Uruguayan has refused to leave and could spend the season on the stands.
Barcelona, meanwhile, are also linked with another Dutch player Georginio Wijnaldum. The Liverpool midfielder is another of Koeman’s top target having already managed him in the national team for two years. Barcelona though are yet to make any official bid for the player with former club footballer Thiago Alcantara also in the reckoning.