Jordi Alba’s likely EPL switch had been cut short after Manchester City’s bid was turned down.
Barcelona has dealt Arsenal and Manchester United’s hopes of sign Spanish international.
Barcelona defender Jordi Alba has not seen first team opportunities coming as steadily as in his previous seasons at the Nou Camp and was believed to be available. Luis Enrique’s revamping of the Barca team this season has seen the acquisition of new players to strengthen defensive positions in the team, Jeremy Mattiue brought in to provide competition for Alba.
Both Arsenal and United were making efforts, lining up a £25 million enquiry to bring the player to England, but news that big-spending rivals, Manchester City have already had a bid rejected by Barca will significantly weaken the prospect of any potential success in the bid.
Francis Gallardo, a FIFA agent, has disclosed that the Premier League Champions had made a serious enquiry for Alba but were asked to look elsewhere.
“City is interested in a player of Barca… and made a bid for Jordi Alba but it was rejected by Barcelona.”
This will come as a significant set-back to both clubs as a rejection of the financial might of City could mean that Arsenal and United will have to muster much more to secure the player.
Both Arsene Wenger and Louis van Gaal have been short of options in defence this season, with a series of injuries in the department making them very exposed and thin at the back. Though stocked with at least 2 players each in the left-back position, Wenger was hoping to bring Alba in to provide top competition to first-choice Kieran Gibbs while Nacho Monreal’s ability to adjust into center half undergoes grafting. United, on their part, have deployed Daley Blind in the holding role in midfield while concerns over Luke Shaw’s fitness have created uncertainties over the actual man to man that position for them.
It then means that Wenger will have to either renew his search for defensive improvement to other players or push Barca to test their resolve, with a perhaps better and more forceful bid.
Alba signed for Barcelona in 2012, having already an agreement had been reached with Valencia prior to the Euro 2012 in Poland and Ukraine. The 25-year old has since been a regular in both the Barcelona team as well as first-choice left-back in Vicente del Bosque’s squad, ahead of Nacho Monreal. The rise of right-footed Cesar Azpilicueta been deployed at Chelsea in the left-back role has put Alba on the edge to improve on his performances to keep his place. He also faces a more natural opposition in new Liverpool recruit in Alberto Moreno, whose stature and style of play is similar, having also come through from the Andalucian region of Spain.
Alba, though, may be looking to prove his worth at the Nou Camp, with an extension to his current deal meant to run in 2017 said to be on the cards.
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