Camp Nou clearout: Coutinho, Griezmann & all the players Barcelona would sell to buy Lautaro

Ousmane Dembele Philippe Coutinho Antoine Griezmann Barcelona Bayern Munich 2019-20 GFXGetty/Goal

It is easy to understand why Ivan Zamorano is so optimistic about former club Inter holding on to Lautaro Martinez – in spite of Barcelona's intense interest in the striker.

"I'm convinced he'll stay," the Chilean told Mision TUDN on Monday. "Barca have to put €100 million on the table; that's the minimum Inter will accept for Lautaro, even if [Inter coach Antonio] Conte likes [Arturo] Vidal.

"But Barcelona have financial problems that won't allow them to take Lautaro, so that's why I think he'll stay. I have no doubts."

Article continues below

However, while the cash-strapped Catalans may have given up on bringing Neymar back to Camp Nou this summer, they have not given up on signing Lautaro.

Indeed, Barca are getting very creative in their attempts to land the Argentina attacker, who has a buy-out clause of €111m (£97m/$121m) that expires on July 15.

As already revealed by Goal, the Blaugrana would like to swap Nelson Semedo with Manchester City's Joao Cancelo, and then immediately give the latter to Inter in order to reduce their outlay on Lautaro.

However, Barca are also trying desperately to raise as much capital as possible for the summer transfer window, which is why they would listen to offers for every single member of the first-team squad bar Lionel Messi, Frenkie de Jong and Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

That means that the board would even be open to offloading Ousmane Dembele and Antoine Griezmann, which represents a remarkable state of affairs given they are two of the statement signings of Josep Maria Bartomeu's tenure.

Indeed, Bartomeu has previously claimed that Dembele is a better player than the man he effectively replaced at Camp Nou, Neymar, while it was the president who pushed so hard to convince Griezmann to come to Catalunya last year even after the Atletico Madrid forward had humiliated Barca by turning them down the summer before.

However, there have always been tactical concerns over whether Griezmann, who performs best in a two-man attack, is right for Barca's beloved 4-3-3 formation - a system that coach Quique Setien previously tried to move away from only to be talked out of it by the most senior members of his squad.

Consequently, Barca would listen to any offer for Griezmann in the region of the €120m (£105m/$131m) they paid Atleti for his services.

As for Dembele, there is no denying that he is still a player of enormous potential, but the 23-year-old remains maddeningly injury-prone, meaning Barca are ready to cut their losses on a player they bought from Borussia Dortmund in 2017 for an initial €105m (£92m/€115m).

Barca, though, have yet to receive any big offers for Dembele, which is perhaps unsurprising given the World Cup winner's discipline has also been called into question in the past.

Dembele's compatriot Samuel Umtiti is also in a similar boat in light of his own injury issues over the past two years. Essentially, clubs are reluctant to take a gamble on the centre-half for precisely the same reason Barca are willing to let him leave.

Of course, Barca's primary objective in terms of outgoings this summer was finding a buyer for the their record signing, Philippe Coutinho.

The Brazil playmaker is currently sidelined with an injury of his own at Bayern Munich, who in turn have already decided against making the attacking midfielder's stay at the Allianz Arena permanent.

Barca are, therefore, praying that a Premier League side comes in for the former Liverpool star, but even England's elite are feeling the financial strain caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

As a result, the Blaugrana have yet to receive a single bid for a player that they are willing to sell for just half of his original fee of €160m (£142m/$173m).

The Coutinho situation is particularly problematic for a club that needs to raise €40m (£36m/£43m) in player sales before June 30 just to meet their budgetary requirements for 2019-20.

To date, they have pocketed just €6m from the departure of Marc Cucurella, who has joined Getafe on a permanent deal having originally moved to Coliseum Alfonso Perez on loan at the start of the campaign.

Of the remaining members of Barca's potential squad for 2020-21, everyone bar Emerson De Souza and Pedri could be sold.

Brazilian right-back Emerson is presently plying his trade at Real Betis but can be signed by Barca in 2021 for just €6m, while the only decision to be taken regarding Las Palmas' 17-year-old sensation Pedri is whether he will be sent out on loan or added to the first-team squad when he arrives in Catalunya on July 1.

Jean-Clair Todibo has plenty of fans in Barcelona but Schalke have an option to buy the 20-year-old French defender at the end of the season for €25m (£22m/$27m).

What is more, Todibo is one of the very few Barca players that other clubs in Europe are interested in.

Indeed, while Junior Firpo – who only joined from Betis last August – has not proven an attractive bargaining chip to Juventus in their talks with Barca over a swap deal involving playmaker Miralem Pjanic and Blaugrana midfielder Arthur, the Italian champions have considered asking for Toulouse academy product Todibo.

Inter are interested in another Barca loanee, Rafinha Alcantara - currently at Celta Vigo - but as is also the case with Vidal and Ivan Rakitic, the Nerazzurri will not consider taking him if it means receiving less cash up front for Lautaro.

Barca would dearly love to have Vidal and Rakitic off their books, though, given the pair are the wrong side of 30 and on contracts worth €9m (£8m/$10m) and €6m (£5m/$7m) per annum, respectively.

Martin Braithwaite, meanwhile, turns 29 in June and the plan was to have moved him on by then, having only signed the forward from Leganes in February to solve an injury crisis up front.

However, it would be a major shock if Barca not only found a buyer for Braithwaite but also one willing to even match the €18m (£16m/$20m) fee the panicking Catalans handed over for the Denmark international.

And this is Barca's main problem right now: they are in possession of a squad full of ageing or injury-prone players on massive salaries that few clubs want.

Of course, the Blaugrana could yet work out a way to meet Lautaro's buyout clause but, as of right now, Zamorano has every right to be confident that Inter will hold on to their most prized possession.

Which South African club has won the PSL transfer window?

4739 Votes

Thanks for voting.

Results will be shared soon.

Which South African club has won the PSL transfer window?

  • 28%Sundowns
  • 40%Kaizer Chiefs
  • 21%Orlando Pirates
  • 3%SuperSport United
  • 3%Cape Town City
  • 5%Other
4739 Votes