Enrique expects more Barca signings
BARCELONA coach Luis Enrique has confirmed that more new faces will arrive at the Nou Camp this transfer window while some squad members will be sold.
The Spanish champions have recruited Andre Gomes, Samuel Umtiti, Lucas Digne and Denis Suarez since the end of last season while Marc Bartra, Thomas Vermaelen, Adriano Correia and Sandro Ramirez have departed.
“I believe that players will come and some players will leave,” Luis Enrique said in yesterday’s news conference.
Sports daily Marca reported that Manchester City had reached an agreement with Barca to buy goalkeeper Claudio Bravo, who made 32 league appearances for the Catalans last season and that Valencia goalkeeper Diego Alves would replace Bravo at the Nou Camp.
Bravo, the Chile captain, faces stiff competition from Germany international Marc-Andre ter Stegen to be the club’s firstchoice keeper while Jordi Masip is also contending for more playing time.
“All the players want to be starters,” Luis Enrique said. “But no one has come to me to tell me that because they don’t have to.”
When asked how he was managing the goalkeeping situation, Luis Enrique said: “I’ve just told them (Stegen and Bravo) not to knock themselves with the goal posts or the net, the rest is up to them . . .
“I just want three goalkeepers in my first team.” Barca, who won La Liga and the King’s Cup last season, are still looking to reinforce their formidable front line led by Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar.
However, Luis Enrique said: “There are many rumours circulating and I’m not going to get into it. Our focus right now is on Wednesday’s (today)final.”
Barca host Sevilla in the Spanish Super Cup today holding a 2-0 advantage from the opening leg. — Reuters WEST Ham’s record signing Ghanaian international Andre Ayew is to undergo a scan on the thigh he injured in his Premier League debut for them in the defeat by Chelsea.
The 26-year-old France-born forward — who cost West Ham £20.5 million (24m euros, $26.6m) when they signed him earlier this month from rivals Swansea — cut an unhappy figure as he left the pitch midway through the first-half of the 2-1 defeat.
“Ayew has a thigh injury, he told me it’s not a big one but you never know,” said Bilic.
“He will have a scan and we have to wait for the result of the scan to know how long he will be out.”
Even if he recovers Ayew is highly unlikely to feature in West Ham’s Europa League first leg qualifying play-off clash in Romania tomorrow against Astra Giurgui. — AFP