Manchester United made Paul Pogba the most expensive player in the history of football after shelling out £89 million for his transfer from Juventus this summer.
Barcelona sporting director Albert Soler has revealed the club had an agreement with Juventus to sign Paul Pogba, but Manchester United’s world-record offer blew their agreement out of the water.
Soler also claimed Barcelona had first refusal on the France international after striking an agreement following the 2014/15 season. He insisted that Barcelona’s desire to pursue other transfer targets prompted them to move away from the midfielder, allowing him to secure a move back to Old Trafford.
Soler is quoted by Football365 as saying: “Last year we reached an agreement with Juventus: if they wanted to sell Pogba we would have a priority. That was the commitment that we had.
“Juve did not want to sell the player and we didn’t have the need to sign him.Barcelona has always had a great relationship with Juventus. If we would have wanted to do the deal, nobody could advance us.We signed six players with €120million. If one club can pay €120m for one player [it] will be very difficult to sign great players.”
Barcelona have made some strong signings themselves this summer. Instead of pursuing a move for Pogba, the La Liga champions bolstered their midfield ranks with the signings of Denis Suarez and Andre Gomes for a combined £44 million and ended the transfer window by signing Valencia striker Paco Alcacer in a £30 million deal.
The Catalan giants’ transfer business this summer is based on sound logic — Barcelona spread out the risk that is inherent in new signings over several talented young players rather than putting all their eggs in one basket.
With their purchases during this transfer window, Barcelona have virtually covered all departments and should not face significant problems even if a few of their first team players are injured. As for Manchester United, only time will tell whether their outlay for Pogba was justified.