Koeman says Barcelona can’t compete with financial power of Manchester clubs – Manchester Evening News

Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman has admitted that the club cannot financially compete with the likes of Manchester United and Manchester City in the transfer market anymore.

The club were forced to let Lionel Messi leave the club on a free transfer this summer after La Liga rules meant they couldn’t afford to renew his contract with Barcelona, while they have largely been restricted to free signings for their summer incomings.

They have signed Sergio Aguero, Eric Garcia and Memphis Depay on free transfers, but have watched Man City sign Jack Grealish for £100 million, Paris Saint-Germain sign Messi on astronomical wages alongside Sergio Ramos, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Gini Wijnaldum and Achraf Hakimi.

Meanwhile, Man United have completed big money deals for Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and now Cristiano Ronaldo, bringing their summer spending to around £130m.

Koeman, speaking at a press conference, was asked about fans’ frustrations at the current situation at the club and admitted that they just can’t compete financially right now.

“For everyone that wants the best for the club, it’s frustrating, I understand it. On the other hand, we have to be realistic. Economically, the club can’t compete with other clubs, with Paris, City, United. That’s how it is at the moment.

“We can’t demand what has been demanded before at this club. We have to understand the moment the club is in.”

The club are reportedly desperate to offload some of their biggest earners to free up some cash, but are finding it increasingly difficult to find any buyers.

Former Man United defender Gerard Pique took a pay cut to help reduce the club’s wage bill, as did Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba and Sergi Roberto.

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