With age taking a toll on him, Barcelona star Javier Mascherano has asked the club to allow him to leave during the January transfer window.
Javier Mascherano is set to join Chinese Super League club Hebei Fortune FC and reports even suggested that the veteran had agreed to the deal with the Chinese club and will be allowed to join in January. According to ESPN a valuation of €10 million has been accepted by both clubs for the 33-year old Argentinian.
But now the things have taken a turn as Barcelona are in trouble with Samuel Umtiti getting injured and there is a definite shortage of center-backs in their ranks.So the reports of agreement look premature as Barcelona will allow Mascherano to leave only when they find a suitable replacement for him.
Colombian defender Yerry Mina is currently at the top of the shortlist and Barca are very keen to get the signature of the 23-year old defender, but that deal will take place in the next summer transfer window. So, for now, they need someone to fill in the void that will be left by Mascherano’s departure.
Mascherano who joined Barcelona in 2010 has enjoyed a great time at the Spanish club winning many trophies and also leading the side from the front. All in all, he has been a great servant to FC Barcelona. But with time, Mascherano has gone down the pecking order as nowadays Gerard Pique is partnered by Frenchman Samuel Umtiti. With the World Cup knocking at the door, the former Liverpool man is looking for regular game time elsewhere.
Star midfielder Andres Iniesta previously told reporters he wants the Argentinian to stay, as per Marca’s Xavi Hernandez said: “I would like Javier to stay here. He’s a very important figure in the group. We’ll see what happens, both sides are working on an outcome that won’t hurt the club.”
Good feelings 👍⚽️ pic.twitter.com/4KKU8cahmJ
— Javier Mascherano (@Mascherano) December 15, 2017
So now the Catalans will be looking to sign Yerry Mina in winter or else they will have to sign someone on loan for a short period of time. But losing someone of Javier Mascherano’s caliber is a big risk, as his versatility makes him a great option off the bench. But if the 33-year old Argentinian international wants to chase for a regular game time then the Catalan club will definitely not come in between.
With Javier Mascherano comes experience, leadership, and versatility. He may be 33-year old but he still has a lot left in him. Letting him go will be a huge risk all together but Mascherano considers this move necessary for him ahead of the World Cup so it looks like he will leave the club in this winter transfer window.