Friday is Deulofeu D-Day for Barcelona

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The Catalan club have until the end of the week to exercise their buy-back option on the winger, but they must convince him that he can be important


ANALYSIS

Barcelona have until Friday to bring back their former forward Gerard Deulofeu.

Deulofeu to Milan 'very difficult' - agent

The Catalan club retained a buy-back option on the winger when he left to join Everton on a permanent deal in 2015 and can re-sign their former player for €12 million up until the end of this week.

Deulofeu, who is currently away with Spain's Under-21 side at the European Championship in Poland, spent last season on loan at AC Milan and is now in the middle of a three-way transfer scramble for his services.

Gerard Deulofeu Milan Genoa Serie A 18032017

Everton manager Ronald Koeman has said he expects the player back for pre-season, while Milan are keen to sign the Catalan and Barcelona want the winger back on a permanent basis.

Deulofeu not distracted by Barca links

Barca can bring back the 23-year-old by paying €12m, but the club must convince the Spanish international that he has a proper part to play at Camp Nou after he was twice discarded by previous coach Luis Enrique.

Deulofeu wants guarantees that he will not be brought back only to be sold on, but Barca have told the player that he will be important this time around and he is their top target for the right-sided forward role they are looking to fill this summer.

Gerard Deulofeu - Barcelona

Gerard Deulofeu Everton

That could see Lionel Messi operating in a deeper role in midfield, as he did when Barca played 3-4-3 last season. Back then, Rafinha was used as the right-sided winger, but Deulofeu is seen as an upgrade on the Brazilian international.

Deulofeu arrival could see Messi move into midfield

In the meantime, Barca are set to offer a new contract to midfielder Carles Alena, who is attracting interest from Tottenham and manager Mauricio Pochettino.

Alena, 19, made his Liga debut in April and will move up the first team permanently this summer after impressing for Barca B last season.

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