Barcelona have held further talks with young midfielder Ilaix Moriba and are now understood to be more optimistic about renewing the teenager’s contract.
llaix has entered the final 12 months of his current deal and is yet to ink an extension, despite Barcelona’s warning that he would be relegated to the reserves – or even the youth side – and allowed to waste this entire season if he does not renew.
There is plenty of interest in Ilaix, with the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United regularly linked with the 18-year-old, but Barcelona do not want to let him go and are desperate to find an agreement with him.
Ronald Koeman is preparing his squad to head to Germany for a pre-season camp and he wants Ilaix to be part of the team, so Mundo Deportivo note that the Barcelona chiefs have held fresh talks with the midfielder to try find a deal and allow Ilaix to join up for pre-season.
For the first time in weeks, Barcelona have seen progress in the situation and the differences between the two parties are now nowhere near as pronounced as they were not so long ago. An agreement is now thought to be ‘more than possible’.
It’s unlikely that Ilaix will sign a new deal in time to head out to Germany with the team, but Barcelona have accepted that and are simply happy that they are making any sort of progress.
However, there is a suggestion that Barcelona could welcome Ilaix back to the squad even without a formal agreement, just as long as things move forward far enough to make them confident about getting a deal done.
Ilaix is very appreciative of just how much Barcelona are doing to try keep him – talks with his agents have been constant – but he wants to make sure that there will be plenty of minutes for him next season and he will be paid a fair salary for a player of his ability and potential.
Unfortunately, the tricky situation has had some unwanted consequences, with Ilaix taking to Instagram to reveal the wave of racist abuse which has come his way during these contract negotiations.
He posted three coloured fists in a defiant message against the abuse, shaking his head as he scanned through the cesspool that is his comments section.