FC Barcelona seem to get linked with almost every United player under the sun which, given the Catalans’ precarious financial position, often makes little sense whatsoever.
A player under contract with a market value of £71 million (source: transfermarkt.com) and salary of £200,000 per week (source: spotrac.com) is surely beyond the Blaugrana’s capabilities at the moment.
‘Barcelona’s original interest had cooled because they thought they would be unable to meet the personal demands of the former Juventus man,’ The Daily Star claims.
‘However, last week’s mega sponsorship deal with Spotify, worth an estimated £235million over four years, has altered the financial picture at Camp Nou dramatically.
‘And it now means they can enter the race – and come up with a package to tempt Pogba to join the on-going Xavi revolution.
‘Barcelona have made Pogba’s super-agent Mino Raiola aware they will be in for him come June.’
It would appear to be true that Pogba wants to play at a top club and would relish the challenge of La Liga. The Catalans’ mutual interest also seems almost certain to be true. It is also undeniably true that the Spotify deal will ease their financial burden to some extent.
However, there is still the issue of La Liga’s salary capping rules and Pogba’s £250,000 per week salary.
This season, Barça’s once €675 million salary cap was down to €97 million. The capping was the reason the club had to let Lionel Messi go.
La Liga have imposed an overall spending cap on Barça of minus €144 million this season. Spotify’s roughly £60 million per year injection will be a drop in the ocean of the overall £1.16 billion debt.
Even if the spending cap for next season creeps into a positive figure, the club is going to need to sell players before it can buy.
Antoine Griezmann, Philippe Coutinho, Samuel Umtiti, Neto, Clement Lenglet and Sergino Dest are all expected to be offloaded.
The club is busy targetting free agents because of the situation and this is where Pogba comes in. However, his salary is a huge problem.
President Joan Laporta has introduced the club’s own salary cap of €10 million per year for new signings. The 29-year-old’s £250,000 per week works out at €15.4 million at the current rate of exchange.
This difference could be overcome with the payment of variables and bonuses, but Pogba would have to take a 35% cut to his current base salary at United to join Barcelona.
🚨🚨[ @AlfreMartinezz🥇] | JUST IN: Joan Laporta has decided to implement a salary cap for new signings that arrive at Barcelona from June 30. That fixed cap will be €10 million clean. Whoever wants to come to Barcelona will have to adapt to him. #fcblive pic.twitter.com/2twTISkjHC
— BarçaTimes (@BarcaTimes) January 27, 2022
There is a similar issue at Pogba’s other main suitor Juventus, where the salary cap is even lower (currently €171,000 per week (approximately €8.89 per year)).
The Frenchman’s other options are to sign the new deal on offer at United (the value of which is unknown, but is likely to be equal to or more than his current deal) or possibly to sign for Paris Saint Germain, who are rumoured to be interested and who do not have any issues in terms of matching his salary.