Barcelona cannot afford to buy Memphis Depay due to the hit to its finances during the COVID-19 crisis, Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas said.
Tuesday night’s dramatic turnaround followed reports that Depay was leaving Lyon and meeting Ronald Koeman, who until recently was his Dutch coach, at the Camp Nou. The forward appeared ready to move to Spain in a deal that cost Barcelona between € 25 million and € 30 million, various reports indicated.
However, the deal now appears to be closed, as Aulas stated that Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu told him personally that the Catalan giants were not in a position to make an offer.
In a Twitter message, Aulas pointed to a report in the Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf that suggested a 30 million euro measure for the 26-year-old was in the offing.
Aulas wrote: “The president of Barça told me on Sunday that Barça was suffering a lot from the COVID crisis and did not have the possibility of making an offer. #memphis “
Bartomeu recently said that Barcelona was facing losing around 30 percent of its budgeted revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic, and that that figure will likely equate to around 300 million euros.
Depay has scored 46 goals in 103 Ligue 1 appearances for Lyon, Opta statistics show, since arriving from Manchester United in the January 2017 transfer window.
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