Will Barcelona sign a replacement for Ansu Fati in January?

Martin Macdonald
Martin Macdonald Updated: 17 May 2021 22:27 BST 3 min read
Will Barcelona sign a replacement for Ansu Fati in January?

Barcelona have been rocked by the news that Ansu Fati will miss the next four months of action after undergoing knee surgery on Monday.

After a quiet first half against Betis on Saturday in a match which Barca eventually won 5-2, Fati was replaced at half-time due to an injury, which turned out to be an issue with the internal meniscus of his left knee.

The 18-year-old was a bright spark in an otherwise dismal campaign for Barcelona in the 2019/20 and was their top goalscorer in 2020/21 before Lionel Messi came off the bench to score two in the Betis win at the weekend.

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    With Antoine Griezmann suffering another season of disappointment so far, bar a goal against Betis, the attacking impetus has largely been down to Fati and Messi.

    With Fati now out for a while, the pressure will once again fall on Messi’s shoulders… until January at least.

    Throughout the summer, Ronald Koeman was desperate to land Memphis Depay from Lyon, only for Barca, who are in dire straits financially, to fail to come up with the necessary funds, with the large majority of their transfer budget spent on Sergino Dest of Ajax.

    Barca wanted the move, Memphis wanted the move, and even Lyon wanted the move as the Dutchman is out of contract this summer.

    The negotiations went until deadline day only to fail to materialise, with the general feeling being that talks would recommence when the January window opens.

    Ansu Fati: The Numbers

    Now, with Fati missing into next year, the likelihood of another attempted swoop for Memphis just increased significantly in probability.

    Unfortunately for Barcelona, they don’t have too many alternatives to Memphis, either.

    The coronavirus crises has hit them hard, and so can’t afford to spend large sums on players this January, or even next summer, so a cut-price deal for Memphis is looking like the only option.

    When the transfer window opens, they are unlikely to find another player of his calibre available at a knockdown price due to being out of contract.

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