Georginio Wijnaldum now looks set to join Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer after the French giants hijacked his proposed move to Barcelona.
The 30-year-old looked nailed on to join La Blaugrana in the summer, once his contract with Liverpool expired, but Les Parisiens have swooped in at the last second and blown the Catalan side’s proposal out of the water.
Fabrizio Romano reports that Wijnaldum has opted to join PSG over Barça, where he will earn more than double the salary he was expected to receive at Camp Nou.
The former Liverpool star had reached an agreement in principle with Barcelona two weeks ago, and his representatives have spent the last few days finalising details on his contract with Ronald Koeman’s side.
He was also set to undergo a medical which had been scheduled, and the club were confident in capturing the latest free transfer following the arrivals of Sergio Aguero and Eric Garcia.
But their demands were completely gazumped by PSG’s eye-watering offer, and with Barça refusing to renegotiate with the Dutchman, he has decided to perform a U-turn and head to the French capital instead.
There, Wijnaldum will sign a deal that runs until 2024, earning a salary expected to be over £200,000-a-week. It will come as a huge blow to Barcelona, who had believed that the chance to link up with former national team coach Koeman and compatriot Memphis Depay would be enough to convince him to stick with his original decision.
The Liverpool star would be a major coup for whichever club lands his signature, having proven himself to be an elite midfielder during his five years at Anfield. Wijnaldum was a key figure in the side which won the Champions League in 2019 and ended the Reds’ 30-year wait for a Premier League title 12 months later.