Remember when Barcelona signed Martin Braithwaite because they needed a stop-gap striker? And everyone thought he'd be sold almost instantly? Well, it looks like that might be right, as both Everton and West Ham keen on signing him. Shock.
Braithwaite arrived at Barcelona as emergency cover for the injured Ousmane Dembélé, with La Blaugrana paying €18m and giving the Dane a four-year contract with a €300m release clause...for some reason.
According to Sport, Barcelona were always planning to sell Braithwaite this summer and they had hoped to actually offload him for a profit, but they would be prepared to break even on him if such an offer arrived.
Everton and West Ham, who were both said to be keen on Braithwaite during the January transfer window, are still interested in luring him back to England, but they will have to pay at least €18m to get the deal over the line.
It's worth noting that Barcelona would actually be open to keeping him. Braithwaite is described as 'beloved' in the dressing room, and he has actually come in and done what Barcelona asked of him, but they would prefer to see him move on.
Obviously, they would like the money to reinvest on both Paris Saint-Germain's Neymar and Inter's Lautaro Martínez, so the hope is that either Everton or West Ham will pay up. There has also been interest from Italy, but the Premier League is seen as his most likely destination.
It all makes sense from a Barcelona perspective, but is this really the deal that Everton and West Ham should be pursuing?
Beginning with Everton, Dominic Calvert-Lewin has been doing his best impression of Brazilian Ronaldo since Carlo Ancelotti's arrival, so there doesn't really seem like much point in paying €18m for Braithwaite, whose track record of nine goals in 40 games with Middlesbrough isn't really the most attractive to look at.
As for West Ham, Sébastien Haller has enjoyed an impressive debut campaign in England, so there's no space for Braithwaite either. Barcelona may want to sell, but they might struggle to find a buyer to pay the kind of money they're looking for.
Source : 90min