Are Leipzig the odds-on-favourite to land the Barça wonderkid?


The FC Barcelona Board and the wonderkid’s representatives had been negotiating a contract renewal for almost two months but, it seems like an agreement is not even close between the two parties.

This 18-year old FC Barcelona wonderkid is none other than their La Masia Academy recruit, Ilaix Moriba. Last season, the Spanish midfielder had played 18 matches for the senior team, including his UEFA Champions League debut against Ligue 1 giants, Paris Saint-Germain by coming on as a substitute in the 79th minute. Alongside this, he has even got one goal and two assists for his name.

As per reports, quite a number of offers were proposed to Ilaix Moriba’s agents but neither of them were able to satisfy their terms. This had created a lot of uncertainty around the player’s future at the Azulgranas, whose will was to stay at Camp Nou and renew his contract.

FC Barcelona had set 8th August as the deadline for the situation to settle things out. But till date, nothing has been sorted yet and Moriba’s future in Spain seems to get faded with each passing minute. The club had confirmed earlier that it would take matters into their own hands, if the situation didn’t get resolve within the deadline.

Ilaix Moriba in action during the LaLiga 2020/21 season.

If the sources are to be believed, the Catalan giants are not intending to make any further proposals to Ilaix and now, they are ready to hear offers for their Academy recruit. As far as the asking price is concerned, they are willing for an offer around €15-20m though the estimated market value of Ilaix is around €9.2m. Many clubs from England are eyeing this situation with Chelsea being one of them. In Germany, RB Leipzig have shown a concrete interest in the 18-year-old midfielder and seems to be the favourites to land the Barça wonderkid if he leaves Spain.

The situation is tense and the club isn’t willing to be flexible with him at any point. With just 11 days left for transfer window to come to a close, if Ilaix Moriba doesn’t end up leaving in these final days of the window, it is very likely that the player will not only miss games with the first-team but with the FC Barcelona B team as well. He will just attend the training session and spend the whole season, sitting in the stands with his fellow teammates, something he is actually  willing to do, as per report.

President Joan Laporta Estruch even addressed this situation during Emerson Royal’s presentation and had made his thoughts very clear saying: “We will try to make sure that his case is not repeated anymore. He has one year left on his contract and does not want to accept the club’s conditions. We do not accept that and we want to send a message to the team. If you do not want to renew, there are other solutions.

“What we don’t want are players made at La Masia who don’t want to renew. He’s a player we’ve given opportunities, but the club is above all. I would like you [Ilaix Moriba] to think again. We cannot allow him to be promoted [to the senior team] and then leave. We won’t accept that with any player.”

If rumours are to believed, even after coach Jürgen Klopp announced that Liverpool FC won’t be going for any further signings in the on-going transfer window, The Reds are reportedly thinking of making an €18m offer to the Catalan giants for the central midfielder.

Dipro Mukherjee
18. Calcutta. Sagittarius. Sports Columnist.


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