Barcelona’s pursuit of Cesar Azpilicueta as the Evening Standard reports that the Blues have demanded a transfer fee of £7 million for the club icon, with the defender agreeing on a contract with the Catalans.
Azpilicueta has his sights set on leaving Chelsea as he enters the final year of his contract with them. The versatile defender has reportedly already reached an agreement with the Blaugrana about personal matters, and a move to Barcelona is his top objective.
Talks with Chelsea have picked up momentum over the past week, with the club’s new chairman and interim director, Todd Boehly, travelling to Barcelona to negotiate with the Catalans for multiple deals, including Azpilicueta.
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Reports in Spain had indicated that a deal worth around €3 million was close to being finalised. However, now as per Evening Standard, Chelsea are demanding a sum of £7 million (€8.3 million) to let go of their club captain.
It is further claimed that Azpilicueta has agreed on a lucrative contract with the La Liga giants. As per the terms of the agreement, the Chelsea ace is expected to pocket around £11 million per year (€13 million) before tax with Barcelona.
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The blues giants had shelled out £7 million to sign Azpilicueta from Marseille in 2012 and wish to recoup the entire sum this summer. But the report adds that there is a feeling that further negotiations between the two clubs should see the asking price drop.
Xavi Hernandez has made Azpilicueta one of his top targets this summer as he looks to bolster the right side of his defense. Dani Alves, who was released when his contract expired, is set to be replaced by the 32-year-old.
Since things are moving quickly, it’s possible that the Blaugrana will sign Azpilicueta before departing for their preseason tour of the United States.