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Emerson will extend his contract with Barça until 2026

Emerson Royal of Real Betis Balompie in action during the La Liga Santander match between SD Eibar and Real Betis at Estadio Municipal de Ipurua on May 13, 2021 in Eibar, Spain / Juan Manuel Serrano Arce / Getty Images

After returning from his loan spell with Real Betis yesterday for €9 million, FC Barcelona will extend Emerson Royal’s contract until 2026.

According to a report from Mundo Deportivo, the right back’s agent, Federico Pena, met with club representatives at Camp Nou today to discuss the Brazilian’s future at Barça. The club informed Pena that it has Emerson in the squad’s plans for next season and that his contract will be extended an additional two years until 2026. He could also see his salary and release clause improved.

Emerson became the third player to join the Blaugrana for little-to-no cost this week, following the free transfers of Sergio Agüero and Eric Garcia from Manchester City.

Adding another right back to Ronald Koeman’s side bolsters competition for the starting position. Emerson will compete with Sergiño Dest, Oscar Mingueza, and Sergi Roberto—who might leave the club—for the spot.

The 22-year-old initially joined Barça in January 2019 from Brazilian side Atletico Mineiro. However, he was loaned to Real Betis for two-and-a-half years as part of a three-way agreement.

Emerson became a mainstay at right back for Betis during his time in Andalusia. He recorded five goals and 10 assists in 79 appearances, and he played more than any Betis player last season. He helped Betis secure Europa League qualification for next season as Manuel Pellegrini’s side finished sixth in La Liga last season.

Before signing with Barça yesterday, he was also on the radar of some of Europe’s other elite clubs. Arsenal, Inter Milan, AC Milan, and Villarreal were each interested in signing the 22-year-old.

His performance last season earned him a call-up to the Brazilian national team for the World Cup qualifiers. Emerson will play in place of the injured Dani Alves at right back, and it is possible that he will compete in the Copa America later this month.