Cash-strapped Barcelona couldn't afford Memphis Depay's knockdown fee 1 year ago

Cash-strapped Barcelona couldn't afford Memphis Depay's knockdown fee

Lyon did all they could to make deadline day deal happen

While much of the focus on these shores has been trained on the train wreck of a transfer window at Old Trafford, it shouldn't be forgotten that this has been a particularly difficult time for the mighty Barcelona, too.

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After a very public spat between the club's board and want-away Lionel Messi ended in the Argentine reluctantly agreeing to stay (because he had no choice), Barca have struggled to bring in the kind of signings that might make their number ten reconsider leaving after his contract ends at the end of the season.

Having sold Luis Suarez to Atletico Madrid, it appeared the club were also close to bidding farewell to Ousmane Dembélé - if only for a season. Recently appointed Ronald Koeman was open to the prospect of the Frenchman departing, especially if the club had managed to bring in Memphis Depay from Lyon.

In the end, Dembélé stayed put, as did Depay - despite Lyon's attempts to make the deal happen.

Lyon had initially asked for an upfront fee of £22.7m (€25m) with £4.5m (€5m) in add-ons for the 26-year-old - a pretty reasonable price in the current climate. However, according to reports in De Telegraaf, Barca's financial troubles meant this was beyond them.

Recognising this, the French club's president Jean-Michel Aulas is said to have revised his asking price in an attempt to push the deal through - dropping the upfront fee to just £18m.

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Unfortunately for Barca, the reduced price was still too much, costing Depay his dream move. The same report says the player is hoping Barca will reignite their interest in the January window.

The collapse of the move could also prove to be problematic for Lyon, who are yet to agree a new contract with the former United winger. Should a transfer in January not be arranged, they risk him leaving for free next summer.