Girona has been left fuming with Barcelona after head coach Xavi made contact with Oriol Romeu. Following the departure of Sergio Busquets, Barcelona is searching for a new defensive midfielder. However, they are likely to miss out on their top target, Marcelo Brozovic, who is on the verge of leaving Inter for Al-Nasr in Saudi Arabia. Romeu, a La Masia graduate who is 31 years old, has been mentioned in reports as a potential target for Xavi. Some reports even indicate that the Barcelona manager has personally contacted Romeu regarding a summer return to Camp Nou. The Girona leadership was angered by Xavi’s contact, and they issued a brief statement.
“Oriol Romeu has a contract with Girona that expires in 2025, therefore we know that Barcelona head coach Xavi has phoned our player. As a result, we argue that this cannot be done,” a Girona statement read.
Romeu’s contract with Girona is said to include a release clause of less than €10 million, which, although reasonable, might still provide issues for a Barcelona team looking to reduce expenditure while regaining control of their resources. The 31-year-old entered Barcelona’s youth program in 2004 and made two first-team appearances during the 2010–11 season before being signed by Chelsea in 2011.
Romeu eventually returned to Spain with Girona last summer after receiving a number of loans and making the move permanently to Southampton. The seasoned player was one of Michel’s finest players, earning accolades for his brilliant game as Girona placed tenth in La Liga in their first season back in the top division. Romeu, whose €60 million release clause makes him a more affordable option than Real Sociedad prodigy Martin Zubimendi, has earned Barcelona’s attention.
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