Barcelona president Joan Laporta says the first team must be reinforced with new signings in January and assured fans that the club “are working” towards that goal.
The Blaugrana are enduring a difficult campaign, sitting seventh in LaLiga after 15 games – 16 points behind rivals Real Madrid at the top of the table with a game in hand on the leaders.
Barca have also been eliminated from the Champions League at the group stage, finishing one point behind Benfica in third, and will now have to play a Europa League knockout play-off tie.
Financial issues prevented the club from offering Lionel Messi a new contract, with the 34-year-old leaving on a free transfer to Paris Saint-Germain in the last transfer window.
Barca attempted to replace him with two attacking signings – Memphis Depay and Sergio Aguero – who both arrived on free transfers themselves, but the latter has only featured five times and has been ruled out indefinitely with a heart condition.
Laporta is aware that the Blaugrana require new faces if they are to return to competing for major silverware, but pointed to a hefty wage bill as a significant obstacle.
“We all agree that we must reinforce the first team,” Laporta said on Friday. “The problem is that we have inherited contracts that do not give us a salary margin.
“Even so, we are looking for the formula to improve the first team in this winter market. We are working to achieve it.”
Despite the difficulties, we will strengthen the first team. Now more than ever, we have to row in the same direction, and do what’s best for Barça. pic.twitter.com/TUbOTd3J21
— Joan Laporta Estruch (@JoanLaportaFCB) December 10, 2021
Barca’s next game is against Osasuna away from home on Sunday as they look to close the six-point gap between themselves and the Champions League places.