The services of Samuel Umtiti and Miralem Pjanic are no longer needed at FC Barcelona according to reports. The Spanish La Liga giants have reportedly written to the two players to terminate their contracts and leave the club this summer.
Samuel Umtiti and Miralem Pjanic still have two and three seasons left on their contracts respectively but Barcelona are not ready to wait for so long to get rid of the players.
Reports claimed that the two players are part of the players the Spanish club intends to sacrifice ahead of the 2021-2022 season. The club intends to raise money to execute the contract extension of Lionel Messi which has been dragging since the summer of 2020.
Messi’s contract with the Spanish club has expired since June 30, 2021, and he is now a free agent but the club president, Joan Laporta has insisted that the negotiations between the club and Messi’s representatives are still ongoing.
One of the reasons why the contract extension talks are still dragging is because the club must cut down on their wage bill. The club is currently going through a financial crisis like most of the top clubs in Europe.
Recall that due to the effect of the coronavirus pandemic, clubs played most parts of the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 seasons behind closed doors. This has drastically reduced their revenues and limited most clubs’ activities in the transfer market.
Hence, Barcelona are trying by all means to reduce the amount they spend in running the club and raise more money to carter for the wage bill of the club’s talisman, Messi. To achieve that, players like Samuel Umtiti and Miralem Pjanic have to go this summer.
According to a report by a Spanish news outlet, Marca, the club sent a letter to Samuel Umtiti and Miralem Pjanic which read: “given the current financial situation of the club and the salary limit, we’re giving the player the option to terminate their contract with the club and to leave”.
Samuel Umtiti joined Barcelona from Lyon on July 14, 2016, for a transfer fee worth £22.50 million. Since then, the 27-year-old French center-back has played 132 times for Barcelona in which he scored 2 goals in all competitions. His contract with Barcelona ought to expire on 30 June 2023.
As for Miralem Pjanic, the 31-year-old Bosnia-Hecenterina center midfielder joined Barcelona from Juventus on September 1, 2020, for a transfer fee worth €60 million. Since then, he has managed to play 30 times in all competitions. His contract with Barca ought to expire on June 30, 2024.
Samuel Umtiti and Miralem Pjanic are expected to meet with Barcelona separately to discuss their compensation before they officially cease to be members of the club.