Mon. Nov 23rd, 2020

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Gerard Pique and Marc-Andre ter Stegen among FOUR Barcelona stars to extend stay at the club

3 min read

Barcelona have announced contract extensions for four first-team players, including experienced centre back Gerard Pique whose new deal until June 2024 would extend his stay at the Catalan side to 16 years.

The 33-year-old former Spain international, who arrived from Manchester United in 2008, was sent off in Tuesday’s 5-1 Champions League victory over Hungarian outfit Ferencvaros, not the way he would have liked to celebrate his new deal.

Barca confirmed a buy-out clause of £457million (€500m) in the contract, and said the extension was ‘subject to the player making a certain number of appearances from the 2021-22 season’.

Centre-back Gerard Pique is among four Barcelona stars to have extended their contracts

Centre-back Gerard Pique is among four Barcelona stars to have extended their contracts

First-choice goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen has agreed new terms until June 2025

First-choice goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen has agreed new terms until June 2025

First-choice goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen also signed a new deal to June 2025, while centre back Clement Lenglet and midfielder Frenkie de Jong have been offered contracts up to June 2026.

‘These agreements have been reached following weeks of negotiations and include a temporary salary adjustment due to the current circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 induced crisis,’ Barca said in a statement on Tuesday.

The news comes with financial uncertainty still looming large at a club who are still trying to cut costs.

Midfielder Frenkie de Jong has also been offered new terms but which will run until 2026

Midfielder Frenkie de Jong has also been offered new terms but which will run until 2026

Centre-back Clement Lenglet completes the quartet and joins de Jong in signing until 2026

Centre-back Clement Lenglet completes the quartet and joins de Jong in signing until 2026

Barcelona chiefs are attempting to impose a 30 per cent wage cut for all their first-team squad and non-playing staff as they continue to feel the financial slump caused by the pandemic.

That is despite selling a number of high-profile names in the summer, with Luis Suarez joining LaLiga rivals Atletico Madrid in a £5.5m deal, while Ivan Rakitic went back to Sevilla after six years in Catalonia.

Arturo Vidal was also let go for a minimal amount to join Inter Milan, while right-back Nelson Semedo fetched the biggest transfer fee after he joined Wolves in a £37m deal.

Barcelona also faced the prospect of losing Lionel Messi in the summer after he handed a transfer request just a week after Ronald Koeman had replaced Quique Setien as boss.

The news comes with Josep Bartomeu and club chiefs looking to cut costs with a wage cut

The news comes with Josep Bartomeu and club chiefs looking to cut costs with a wage cut

The club are still suffering despite selling stars including Luis Suarez in the summer window

The club are still suffering despite selling stars including Luis Suarez in the summer window

But after LaLiga and Barcelona insisted his £634m release clause had to be paid and that he could not leave on a free as he claimed he could, Messi shied away from a legal battle and agreed to stay for another year.  

However, the departures that were confirmed were part of a huge overhaul desired by Dutchman Koeman after the 2019/20 season ended in horrific fashion.

Barcelona were humiliated 8-2 in the Champions League by Bayern Munich and also surrendered their LaLiga crown to arch rivals Real Madrid.

The club also faced losing Lionel Messi before he eventually agreed to stay in a dramatic saga

The club also faced losing Lionel Messi before he eventually agreed to stay in a dramatic saga

Messi asked to leave after the club suffered Champions League humiliation to Bayern Munich

Messi asked to leave after the club suffered Champions League humiliation to Bayern Munich

The defeat saw new boss Ronald Koeman deem it necessary to set a squad overhaul in motion

The defeat saw new boss Ronald Koeman deem it necessary to set a squad overhaul in motion

Koeman’s consequently deemed an overhaul necessary and was successful in bringing in Sergino Dest and Miralem Pjanic, the latter in a swap deal for Arthur with Juventus.

However, the former Netherland boss confirmed the club’s dire finances prevented them from making further acquisitions, such as ‘special’ Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum and Lyon star Memphis Depay. 

‘Gini has great special awareness. He can get into the box fantastically well from the middle of the park. He really could’ve brought something to the team,’ Koeman told Dutch publication Algemeen Dagblad. 

Pjanic joined in a swap deal with Juventus in exchange for Arthur

Sergino Dest was signed from Ajax after Nelson Semedo joined Wolves

The club did manage to sign some players such as Miralem Pjanic (left) and Sergino Dest (right)

‘But the club knew the economic situation. [Wijnaldum]’s position was less of a priority in the end than, for example, a right-back or centre-forward.

‘Everything was ready, but because of the LaLiga rules we knew we had to sell first before we could sign our targets,’ Koeman added about Depay. 

‘In the end it was not possible. It was disappointing, but Memphis knew how the situation was at Barca.’

Wijnaldum ended up staying at Liverpool despite Barcelona's interest

Depay was eager for a move to Camp Nou but Barcelona could not afford him due to their dire finances

But the club could not afford Georginio Wijnaldum (left) or Memphis Depay (right) on top

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