Barcelona boss says transfers are ‘close’ after Supercopa defeat
Since losing Neymar Catalans have been heavily linked to Coutinho and Dembele
Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverdesays he knows the club need to buy new players. Photograph: Getty Images
Barcelona general manager Pep Segura has said the signings of Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele are “close” after watching his side lose to arch-rivals Real Madrid in the Supercopa de Espana final.
Liverpool have remained adamant that Brazilian playmaker Coutinho — who has submitted a transfer request — will not be sold in this transfer window while Borussia Dortmund suspended Dembele after the forward failed to show for training amid links with Barcelona.
However, Segura expressed confidence deals for both players could be done before the transfer window closes.
“We are close to Coutinho and Dembele,” he said on Catalan television station TV3. “We are discussing their deals but do not know when it will be done.”
Asked if he expected them to sign, he added: “Yes, we expect it.”
Reports in Spain on Wednesday suggested Barca had agreed a fee with Dortmund for French winger Dembele.
Barca are looking to replace Neymar following his shock world record transfer to Paris St Germain, and their need for reinforcements was apparent as they lost 2-0 to Madrid on Wednesday night, completing a 5-1 aggregate loss to the Spanish and European champions.
“We know we have to strengthen this team and that is what we are doing,” Segura added. “We have to help the team.”