Barcelona are reportedly preparing a new contract for Sergi Roberto in an attempt to fend off interest from Chelsea, Manchester City and others.
Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo have claimed that Barcelona are preparing a new contract for Sergi Roberto after the player has impressed in his new role at right-back. The Spaniard is a La Masia graduate and was a central midfielder before completing a successful transition to the right-back position under Luis Enrique, in order to cover for the departed Dani Alves.
Sergi Roberto Carnicer started his career as a defensive-minded central midfielder and played at that position until last season as injuries to right-backs forced Luis Enrique to deploy the 24-year-old as a make-shift defender.
The player has been a revelation in that position and has started this season on a remarkable note with 4 assists in 4 games thus far. He seems to have found the perfect blend between defence and attack as his creative side can easily be seen in the crosses and passes he provides for his teammates.
Sergi Roberto is still on a low-wage deal signed a while ago, but media outlets are now reporting that Barcelona are prepared to reward the player with a new contract and a bump in weekly remuneration.
There might, however, be a new twist as Spanish media outlet Don Balon are reporting that Barcelona’s contract extension thoughts are rushed by the interest shown in the player by the likes of Chelsea, Manchester City and Paris-Saint Germain with the Premier League duo showing more interest than others.
Read other Barcelona transfer stories : Aleix Vidal linked with January move to AC Milan
Chelsea have the ageing presence of Branislav Ivanovic and Manchester City have a similarly aged group of full-backs available at Pep Guardiola’s disposal. Both the clubs would benefit in securing a transfer for Sergi Roberto as the player would provide a long-term replacement at the right-back position.
Don Balon also reported that the player’s current contract which runs till 2019 includes a minimum release clause to the tune of €40m, which is thought to be low compared to the buy-out clauses of his peers at the club, which is also thought to be one of the main concerns for Barcelona’s hierarchy as they look to bump up the release clause with a new contract.
Although, it is highly implausible that Sergi Roberto would think of leaving his boyhood club, who are also the one of the biggest clubs in Europe and where he has been able to lock down a regular place in the starting lineup. However, the player could be persuaded by the charm of the Premier League, something which Barcelona look to avoid by agreeing a new contract with the player and his representatives, at the earliest.