Barcelona may have to pay an additional ‘£262 million’ in wages to four players as a result of deals signed in October 2020 that were designed to save the club money in the short term.
Former club president Josep Maria Bartomeu resigned shortly after the deals were completed.
According to reports in Sport, the Board of Directors at Barcelona secured contract renewals for Gerrard Pique, Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Clement Lenglet and Frenkie de Jong that gave the players lower wages that would be recovered later.
The saving was reported as being ‘between £13.5m and £15m’ in salary savings, as well as ‘£12.5m’ for the ‘authorization of the contracts.’
Sport also claim that the short-term saving strategy could now cost The Catalan giants ‘£262 million’ in extra wages, and that the club is now trying to persuade the four players to renounce the wage increases they agreed to in 2020.
According to reports in The Athletic, Barcelona have already written to De Jong to tell him that they ‘questioning the legality of actions on behalf of the parties who signed his renewal’ in October 2020.
The Dutchman has been an especially interesting case given the interest in him from outside Barcelona.
His future has been the subject of huge speculation this summer with Barca desperate to either sell the Dutch midfielder or come to an agreement over the £17million he is owed in deferred wages.
Barcelona see the selling of De Jong as the answer to the current financial constraints that are stopping them from registering new signings. They also believe his departure will allow them to pursue a deal for Bernardo Silva from Manchester City.
De Jong is wanted by Manchester United and the Premier League giants agreed a £63m deal with Barcelona last month but he has no intention of joining a club that cannot offer Champions League football.
Chelsea are also believed to be keen but Thomas Tuchel appeared to suggest that midfield was not a pressing issue for the club after his side’s 1-0 win over Everton on Saturday.