FOOTBALL

Barcelona yet to register three players in La Liga squad

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Barca’s financial issues have been well documented over the last number of years, with the failure to register Lionel Messi’s contract, and subsequently being forced to sell the greatest footballer of all time to Paris Saint-Germain, being the nadir of the club’s recent history.

Since then, the club have fallen foul of La Liga’s salary cap rules on a number of occasions. In January 2023 Barcelona were blocked by the league from making any permanent signings, and in the current summer transfer window the club missed out on re-signing Messi due to these issues too, with the player himself admitting that the financial issues at Barcelona led to his decision to not re-join the club.

Despite not signing Messi and having a net spend of -£94.5m this summer – only signing one non-free agent in Oriol Romeu for a reported £2.91m – the club are still struggling to register a number of first-team contracts.

Two games into the new season, Barcelona have still not registered Alonso, Pena and Martinez.

Barcelona

Ex-Chelsea man Alonso signed a new contract with Barca in January, while back-up goalkeeper Pena signed a new deal just a few months ago in May, but there is not yet room to register either in Xavi’s squad.

As for Martinez, the centre-back only joined on a free transfer from Athletic Club this summer but has not yet been registered after suffering an injury during pre-season which rendered him unavailable anyway.

Despite concerns over their ability to abide by the rules, Barcelona continue to work on new signings and are pushing ahead with plans to sign full-back Joao Cancelo on loan from Manchester City.

An agreement has been reached with City which will see Barcelona pay the majority of Cancelo’s wages for the 2023/24 season, with the La Liga side also holding the option to make the move permanent for £30m.

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