FC Barcelona officially announced on Saturday that they have completed the signing of Memphis Depay. The Dutchman will join the Catalans as a free agent after his contract ends this month will Olympique Lyonnais.
The Blaugrana were after Depay since Ronald Koeman took over the manager charge in 2020. Barcelona were also close to signing the forward last year, as Lyon agreed to sell Depay for €25 million. But the deal fell through as the Catalans were unable to accommodate him within their La Liga imposed wage cap.
Koeman also approached to sign Depay in January in the winter transfer window. But the club didn’t sanction the transfer as they were running without a president at that time. However, Koeman has, at last, got his much-awaited deal this summer, as Depay agreed to join Barcelona next season.
Depay was also happy announcing his transfer to Barcelona, as he had always said that he wants to play under Koeman. The Dutchman has great respect for Koeman as he helped him grow as an impressive player when he coached the national team. Koeman helped Depay to get back on his own feet after Manchester United labelled him a flop transfer.
The confidence boost from Koeman helped the Dutchman to show some impressive performances for Lyon over five years. This season Depay scored 22 goals while assisting 12 in all competitions while appearing 40 times. Following his impressive form last season, he had been called up for the Euro 2020.
After he is released by his national team, he will be set for flying to Spain for joining Barcelona. The Catalans have signed Depay for the next two seasons. While it is also reported that the club has included a €500 million buyout clause in his contract.
Barcelona bolsters their attacking options by signing Memphis Depay
Barcelona went to suffer a lot last season as they let Luis Suarez leave as a free agent to Atletico Madrid. The Catalans were left with Ansu Fati and Martin Braithwaite as their striker options. While Ansu Fati was out of the team for the rest of the season after suffering an injury in November. And Braithwaite was not at all confident in front of the goal.
This situation forced Koeman to play Lionel Messi as a false no.9 in front of the goal. The move was somewhat successful as Messi was the leading goal scorer for Barcelona last season. But it was not a natural position for the Argentine in the team, as he plays a right-winger.
Due to this situation, Barcelona were forced to dig into the transfer market to sign a natural striker cheaply, following their financial situation. And the Catalans have been successful in filling the no.9 position in the team. The club has already signed two forwards Sergio Aguero and Memphis Depay as a free agent for next season.
However, the question arises about what will be the positions of those two at the upfront. It seems like Koeman will use Aguero or Fati as the main striker. While Depay may be forced to play as a left-winger in the team. But, will we have to wait and see what the Dutch coach thinks about positioning his two new forwards. So, let’s wait until Barcelona’s first match next season to see their new line-up and formation.