As the season has progressed, the weaknesses in the Barcelona squad have become exposed. No depth at center half, an overreliance on “Messidependence” and an wantaway goalkeeper are all areas that Barca boss Tito Vilanova will address this summer.
So who is coming and going from the Camp Nou this summer?
Let’s start with who is coming. Barcelona are reported to ha a transfer budget of around €50m net. That sounds like a lot, but most of that is allocated towards completing the long-awaited deal for Neymar.
Barça have been strongly linked with Borussia Dortmund defender Mats Hummels. The centre-back is a regular in Joachim Löw’s Germany team and is under contract at Dortmund for the next four years, meaning that a deal could prove pricey. Hummels is currently valued at between €20 million and €25 million.
Barca could go for a cheaper version in Arsenal’s Thomas Vermaelen, but Vermaelen is not in the same class as Hummels.
Finally, Barcelona need to do replace Victor Valdes who is expected to leave this summer. The name most often linked with Barca is Valencia goalkeeper Vicente Guaita who is valued at around €10 million.
The signings of Guaita, Hummels and Neymar will cost more than the €50m that Barcelona have allocated, so that means some players will have to leave.
One will be Valdes whose contract is up in a year’s time and has said that he will not be signing a new one. David Villa is expected to ask for a transfer this summer. With the impending arrival of Neymar, Villa can see that he will no longer be a regular in the Barca side.
Alexis Sanchez has been attracting a lot of interest from Italian clubs Juventus and Inter Milan. If the offer is good enough, I would expect to see Barca sell his this summer.
Besides these three big names, Barcelona will also trim some of their squad players this summer.
Barca are reported to be shopping Bartra and Dos Santos while Afellay, Bojan and Fontás have been out on loan and are not expected to return.
So when the transfer window closes at the end of August, the Barcelona side we see then could be very different from the one that lines up against Bayern Munich next week in the Champions League semi-final.