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BARCELONA are set to sign Poland striker Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich in another eyebrow-raising big-money move by the debt-ridden Catalan club.
The clubs have reached an agreement for Lewandowski's move to Camp Nou pending a medical exam and final signing.
Spanish media reports that the transfer would cost Barcelona some €50 million (£42.5m) and appears to signify the Catalans’ desperate determination to solve their financial problems by pursuing on-field success regardless of cost: a funny way to run a business.
Barcelona are mired in debt, mostly due to the huge transfer fees and salaries paid out by their previous president and board. In order to make signings this summer, current president Joan Laporta has had to resort to flogging off 10 per cent of the team’s Spanish league TV rights for the next 25 years in exchange for €207.5m.
The 33-year-old Lewandowski, one of soccer’s most prolific scorers of the past decade, would greatly boost Barcelona’s chances of rebuilding a competitive team after winning nothing last season following the departure of Lionel Messi, their all-time top scorer: the club’s top scorers last season were Memphis Depay and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with 13 goals each.
Lewandowski had one more season left on his contact with the Bavarian club, but said in late May that “my story with Bayern Munich is over” after contract extension talks broke down.
Laporta’s infusion of TV cash helped secure the transfer of Brazil winger Raphinha from Leeds and sign Ousmane Dembele to a new contract last week. To help balance the books, Barcelona said this week that they had reached an agreement with Manchester United to potentially send Holland midfielder Frenkie de Jong to the English club for €75m plus add-ons. De Jong, however, has no interest in leaving Barcelona, according to media reports.
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