Transfer news

Barcelona in talks over recruitment, reveals player agent

Barcelona's stadium, the Camp Nou, in October 2019 / OMAR HAWWASH/BLAUGRANAGRAM
Barcelona’s stadium, the Camp Nou, in October 2019 / OMAR HAWWASH/BLAUGRANAGRAM

Reinforcements are on the cards for Barcelona, and player agent Emre Öztürk, who represents players such as Yusuf Demir and Shkodran Mustafi, has been meeting with Barcelona.

The January transfer window is looming around the corner, and Barcelona continue their preparations for the second half of the season. Having recently renewed the contracts of Marc-André ter Stegen and Gerard Piqué among others, Lionel Messi’s future remains in the air, as it runs out this coming summer.

However, that has not been the sole priority for Barcelona’s interim board, as they continue to look at ways to bolster their squad before ultimately giving up their spot in office to the president and subsequent board that win the electoral race come the end of January.

And although a name has not been publicly confirmed, Emre Öztürk, who represents players such as Shokdran Mustafi, Adrian Grbic, and Yusuf Demir, has traveled to Barcelona for a meeting regarding a potential move for one of his clients.

Öztürk has been meeting with Barcelona, he confirms, stating that although speculations suggested he was meeting with the Catalans over starlet Yusuf Demir, currently playing in Rapid Wien in Austria, which alongside Turkey are the main focal points for Emre Öztürk in the SBE Management player agency, another name is on the table.

When Demir signed for Rapid Wien in the summer of 2019, Öztürk did not hide that there were other clubs at the time, thus planning on using Rapid Wien as a stepping stone for something bigger later down the line. Wien secured his signing after impressive performances in the Sub-19 Mercedes Benz Junior Cup that same summer, despite interest from other clubs.

“After the tournament, we received offers from some of Europe’s big teams. We think we made the right decision for Yusuf’s development. Yusuf [Demir] will prove himself in Rapid Wien and [then] secure a move to a big team”, he told Austrian based news outlet Medya Avusturya, when Demir signed a contract with the Austrian side until 2022 back in May of 2019.

Thus, Öztürk’s presence in Barcelona sparked speculations that it was time for a move to Barcelona, although Öztürk assures another player is the main topic.

“I am not in Barcelona representing Yusuf Demir, but another player, whom we [SBE Management] also represent,” he told SPOX as published this Wednesday.

Interestingly enough, SPOX had released two separate articles on the matter, the latter echoed by GOAL. The first version did not mention a player by name in Öztürk’s quote, although the second, more recent article did. GOAL’s version also mentioned Shkodran Mustafi, alluding to him being the focal point of the negotiations. GOAL’s version has since been deleted, and SPOX’s version mentioning Mustafi in Öztürk’s quote has also been revised to only say ‘another player’. SPOX’s most recent version however states that Öztürk did not deny whether the meeting was about Mustafi.

Should Mustafi be the name in Barcelona’s minds, it is worth noting that he will be a free agent come the summer. Manchester City’s Eric García is in a similar situation, and Barcelona’s options appear aplenty should they wait until the summer to make their defensive acquisition.