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Barcelona ‘don’t trust Newcastle’ amid contract talks with Ousmane Dembele

Dembele’s contract is due to expire in June and the winger has so far not got any closer to signing an extension as reports of a mega-money offer from Newcastle emerge

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Barcelona have grown increasingly wary of Newcastle United as they continue to negotiate with Ousmane Dembele over a new contract.

The French winger has just eight months left to run on his current deal at the Nou Camp and could leave on a free come June.

Dembele will also be able to enter talks with other clubs from January as Barca face a race to get him tied down to an extension before outside interest becomes an issue.

However, they may already have missed the boat on that one, as reports in Dembele’s native France state he has already held discussions with the Newcastle hierarchy over a potential switch.

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Ousmane Dembele is yet to sign a new contract with Barcelona
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NurPhoto/PA Images)




The £305million takeover by Saudi-backed investors has opened up all manner of options to Newcastle in the transfer market.

With Dembele set to be available on a free in the summer, he would be able to command a higher salary than usual, given the lack of a transfer fee.

Foot Mercato claim that Newcastle are now willing to offer him a bumper deal worth €15m (£12.6m) per season over five years, as well as the same amount on top as an initial signing on fee.

That could prove tempting for the 24-year-old, whose time in Spain has hardly been trouble free.









It would be a bitter blow for Barca, amid their financial problems, to lose Dembele for nothing, given he arrived in a transfer which could eventually cost £135.5m.

Dembele’s lack of success on the field means it is unlikely that final figure will be accumulated, but Barca have already forked out an initial £96.8m and have seen little repay on their investment.

Whilst leaving a club of Barcelona’s stature for Newcastle’s project when it’s still in its infancy would be a bold move, Dembele would be handsomely rewarded, while his current club are in the process of slashing costs and negotiating wage reductions with their players.



Newcastle are now being linked with a move for the forward
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Image:

NurPhoto/PA Images)




And it seems it is an opportunity he is considering, as a report from Mundo Deportivo states that discussions between player and club are now ‘less fluid’ than Barca would like.

As such, Barca chiefs don’t trust Dembele’s agent or Newcastle, as they feel the two parties are working on a deal in closed quarters.

Ronald Koeman has made no secret of his admiration for the forward and would like him to stay on beyond the summer, though admitted the situation was “complicated” back in July.







Liverpool and Manchester United are also rumoured to be keeping tabs on his contract saga, while Barcelona have prioritised penning new deals for youngsters Pedri and Ansu Fati.

Dembele is on big wages at Barca and it could prove difficult for them to persuade him to sign an extension on lesser terms.

He is also yet to feature this season following a long line of injury problems over the course of his spell with the Catalan club.

Koeman revealed Dembele is due back soon from his latest injury, though Dembele still has plenty of work to do to justify a high salary offer amid Barca’s crisis.

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