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Does Barcelona pay their players to speculate in the transfer market?


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Does Barcelona pay their players to speculate in the transfer market?


Darsei Canhasi

Transfer rumours usually start from speculation. The stronger the speculation the more credible the rumour is considered. Nowadays with all the speculation coming from the social networks, the football lovers have no idea whether to believe numerous sources.

A well-founded and credible rumour is considered the praise or the comment from a player towards a player of another team. No better team than Barcelona FC is in this regard.

First of all I would like to make things clear: I have nothing against Barca as a team. Interestingly, during the recent times I noticed a strange and seemingly organized pattern of events that truly affected the transfer market. Below I will try to explain and convince you that Barcelona players are paid or encouraged by the team directors to speculate on certain players that are actually being followed closely.

On 20th of August 2012 Alexander Song secured his move from Arsenal to Barcelona. Having two more years left at his contract with Arsenal, Song’s transfer was unexpected and completed within days. It could be said that the transfer was a good piece of business for Barcelona, regardless of the problems that Song is believed to have had in the pre-season with Arsenal.

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But way before Song to Barcelona rumours started, Busquets told ESPN on the 3rd of August: “Song is a very good player – young, a hard worker, with lots of physical power”. How Busquets could know about a potential bid coming from his team towards Song?

As I said earlier, Song to Barca was one of those cases when negotiations wrapped up quickly and thinking that a bid was in place when Busquets spoke to ESPN would be misleading. Five days later Iniesta was the next player to comment about Song. Among other things, Iniesta said: “If he comes it would be because he has the qualities to play here, there is little doubt about that, and we’d welcome him. Two days after Iniesta, Pique is quoted: “We are open to his arrival, he added. “If he comes, and from what I have read he could do, we would love to have him.” I wonder who the writer of the paper Pique read is.

Barca’s first transfer of the last summer was Jordi Alba from Valencia, occurring on the 28th of June. Starting from the middle of May, four Barca players praised Alba (not surprisingly).

  • Adriano broke the deadlock on the 18th of May, about 40 days before Alba was officially unveiled. ”I really like Jordi Alba as a footballer, he is a very good player, very good defensively…If Barca sign him, he would be welcome.
  • David Villa was the next one, on the 6th of June: “He’s one of the people I get along best with and he has had a spectacular career and it is not only Barcelona that would want him, but every team.”
  • Pique two days later: “He’s an amazing player, he surprised me. He’s flying in our training sessions, he’s small but very fast. He knows how to attack and defend.”
  • Pedro, 6 days before the transfer happened: “Let’s hope Barca sign Alba.

Alexis Sanchez is another high-profile purchase of Barca in the recent years. (Un) Luckily, he could not escape the speculations from Barca players. My research findings say that Xavi and Mesi spoke publicly about Sanchez. The transfer was completed on the 20th of July and Xavi with Messi got public about it on 7th and 16th of July respectively. “He is an outstanding player and it would be an extraordinary transfer if we manage to sign him” – said Xavi.

Was Pepe Reina paid from Barca to put the shirt to CescFabregas? On the other hand, here is the latest news: Pique said that Cesc will not leave on loan in January. How many spokesmen do they have? One thing is for sure, these claims truly impact the transfer market.

This kind of speculation is an easy way to make a player unsettled and Barcelona is doing this in a professional manner. Whether those are directed from someone inside the club or whether speculators are paid to do this, it remains a mystery.



20 comments to Does Barcelona pay their players to speculate in the transfer market?

  • Jai

    I have high respects for the free flow football that Barca plays but sadly that skills have drained up their brain so these brainless twats tends to say these things to other teams that the feel is a threat to the Barce… maybe


  • Pope

    I think you should tell us who pays you to write this article, if they were not asked how would they speak. Check other transfer news and see what teams are saying about any players that are coming in.

  • Timmy

    Mystery indeed, Professional? maybe, Morally? that may be had to tell.

  • Woolwich Peripatetic

    This just highlights the difference between the allure of Arsenal & Barcelona.
    Our players are briefed not to talk to the press because it compromises our negotiations with other clubs.
    Barca players are briefed to talk to the press because it assists their negotiations with other clubs.

    A more interesting question is are Barca players paid to spread disinformation? Any comments by the usual suspects about players Barca didn’t sign?

  • Jay

    People speaking of impending transfers or players talking up the qualities of other players has very little influence on any transfers.

    If a player gets talked about the price goes up, not down!!! as the player’s club will use the words and that interest to garner more interest and/or use said interest as a barganing chip in the best way it can and raise/harden the price.

    Only teams, coaches, agents and the players themselves can influence tranfers. These are decisions worth millions of dollars and no amount of talk by players of other teams will change the mind of a club to sell a player. No matter what they say, the selling club have all the ammo in such transactions; That is until the player himself, the selling club and/or his agent(s) intervene.

    Players are not babies and do not ‘get their head turned’as easily as many believe. Most are quite professional and if their transfer cannot happen they get on with it. Having players from other clubs talk you up does not make you want away, nor does it make you push for a transfer. Anyone who thinks that a player ‘gets his head turned’and becomes ‘unsettled’is not familiar with transfers tbh.

    A player can be unsettled by many things ranging from family, friends to illness, contract etc. If you think players from another club talking up the qualities of said player makes him magically play bad or want away is fooling themselves.

    Negotiations go on before bids are tabled. That is how it goes and has always been. Agents, players, clubs talk before bids are ever made to gauge interest, set parameters for eventual talks/deal and get an idea of whats involved/what will be needed to get a deal done. Agents and players know each other and talk to each other. Information trickles down even when you do not want it to and stuff gets said. Nature of the beast.

    To go from that to ‘they get paid to speaculate on transfers’is not only a stretch but…well…not true. Get paid with what? Clicks on newspaper websites? Come on…
    There is no huge conspiracy here, sorry. The reality is Barca players get asked direct questions by catalan press and they answer. In England this is ‘horrible tapping up’ but the truth is it gets done at every club, even Arsenal. Should FCB players speak less about transfers? Sure, less headlines would be fine. Speaking about a player’s abilities has no bearing on a million dollar decision by the selling team which could make or break a season/(s). Clubs can/do become annoyed with press given to transfers but unless the player wants to leave+the selling club is willing to sell+both clubs come to a deal NOTHING HAPPENS NO MATTER WHO IS TALKING AND WHAT THEY ARE SAYING!

  • Odu

    Barcelona encourages their players to disorgnise players they are interested in in other teams. Why should players deceide on the arrival of other players (welcome or not)? MostBarcelona players by these actons can be described as thugs. They did to Cesc (evn Cesc’s mayor joined). UEFA should cme up with a clear rule on tapping of players by clubs

  • Stuart


    I have always had the impression that Barca ask their players to make comments on players whom the club have had contact with. The comments the players make could be likened to a glossy brochure & just in case the player was having second thoughts.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Pope as everybody knows Arsenal pays us to write the articles 😉

  • Adam

    “Good governance is how a club behaves, not just how it is owned.”
    Arsenal supporters trust’s attack on Barca to the house of commons. Bottom of Page 103.

  • Adam

    @Darsei, Since this subject has been brought up you can have my 2 pence worth. The media are tipped off as to what questions to ask and to what player/s the player/s have a response ready. The most used is “The player will be welcome”. You would probably need a Catalan journalist to blow the whistle on that little scam, good luck with that.
    The issue you have not raised is why are Uefa and Fifa not getting involved in players discussing other clubs employees?

  • slaton

    It is funny that any Arsenal fan can talk about any teams transfer policy when their’s is about asking players not to sign contracts so that they can get them free. When they target not only experienced players but young academy hopefulls who would have added quality to their teams if they were npt promised the moon. The fact is its said that the coach loves to give chances to young players but the fact is they have to since they tapped them up with that as the carrot.

  • WalterBroeckx

    do you know the difference between an Arsenal fan and an Arsenal player? I don’t mind Barcelona blogs telling Cesc to come home at all. But the players who work for the club should shut up about it.
    If you cant see that difference…

  • bjtgooner

    I don’t know whether or not Barca pay their players to make comments about prospective additions to the squad, but their players certainly have far too much to say and the Barca management does not appear to try to shut them up.

    The Barca mouthpieces were so irritating prior to the Cesc transfer that I will not watch any Barca match – unless they happen to play Arsenal.

  • weedonald

    What you say is accurate Darsei but as others have pointed out, it is all part of the tapping up that is not only tolerated but eagerly supported by FIFA,EUFA and in the UK, the FA. As notoverthehill correctly states, Arsenal’s transfer negotiation model is designed to bluff their target Clubs and hide their intent from potential poaching Clubs as much as possible, by being silent and keeping a Football poker face, while the spuds,Barca, Real, the Chavs and City seem to rely on a more unsubtle approach. That means a media influenced, Club-Agent directed campaign to unsettle and ¨soften¨up their targets. It is all part of the marketing game and while AFC eschew it like the plague (Wenger’s style) since transparency means being outbid for a prospective target all too often, the more ruthless Clubs will mount a frontal assault in order to win their selected targets. This is Board directed and managerially inspired political manouvering of the most salacious variety but c’est la vie, that is ¨modern¨ Football!

  • marcus

    Hmm…It’ll be funny if Catalonia secede from Spain following their 25th November referendum….might shake things up a bit.

    I doubt that earthquakes, tornados, asteroid impacts, or the collapse of the banking system would alter the fact that the EPL is chronically dysfunctional, and will continue to run the show like a cock-eyed waiter in a force 10 storm.

    I am referring to the Huth stamp, the RVP elbow, etc etc

    It doesn’t matter how good Cazorla and Wilshire are….the EPL is just an irrelevance these days.

  • nicky

    Like the Jimmy Savile saga “there’s no smoke without fire”.

  • Asif

    Just a bit off topic but did anyone notice the look on Cesc’s face after being substituted in the game with Real. What was that emotion? It was as if he’d just witnessed murder…long time back I’d read an article somewhere which said that he is the king at Arsenal and would be just another ball boy there…that has come true! And of course Song watched the game from the bench so much so for playing for your dream club and you can’t even make it to the starting line up in the most important of their games…

  • Stuart

    It’s further proof that they only bought the players to make us weaker.

  • temp1cascade

    i very much tend to agree with “bjtgooner” @ October 8, 2012 at 8:17 pm – so much so, that i prefer to watch Mardid fans, and before Barca fans come out crying wolf, how do you feel when Madrid does that, the Ronaldo saga, how Barca fans critised Real, i dnt mind Fab going to Barca, it was inevitable – fair enought – but the way Barca conducted themselves was deplorable…the sooner they come to terms with this, the better, no one says barca are a shyte team, their players attitudes etc most def. is!

  • sperez

    Though not as tiresome as Fabregas saga, don’t forget about Mascherano. Barca players engaged in their usual tapping-up. Being Argentinian, Messi was the most vocal and even stated that his fellow countryman was ‘depressed’ at LFC. Barcelona exploited the fact that Mascherano’s wife couldn’t set in England in order to get him at a knock-down price.
    I don’t like Barcelona (Robarcelona) at all. By turning on the Camp Nou sprinkler system when Inter players were celebrating they showed the world just how classless they really are.