Barcelona will pay Paulinho's €40 million release clause to ensure they strengthen their midfield in this transfer window, according to Barcelona's RAC1. The Catalan club have chosen Paulinho as the man they want and have pursued him for the majority of the window but with no luck. That is set to change, however, as the club are forced into moves with Neymar inching closer to PSG.
Guangzhou Evergrande have rejected offers for the player in the past but Barcelona have finally accepted that the Chinese club will accept no less than the €40 million stipulated in his contract. The negotiations are not set to be smooth after the Chinese club looked into the possibility of suing Barcelona over their approach for the Brazilian. It was also one of Neymar's wishes that his compatriot join the squad and it could be seen as a move that will appease the attacking star despite reports that he is on the brink of a move to PSG.
The club bought Andre Gomes and Denis Suárez last summer but neither staked a claim for regular enough minutes in Luis Enrique's midfield last season. Andres Iniesta struggled with fitness issues all season and the side needed more form the players who stepped into his role but it never happened. Sergio Busquets and Ivan Rakitic were solid as ever but that third spot in midfield is up for grabs when Iniesta needs rest and when circumstances demand change.
Meanwhile, Coutinho remains heavily linked to a move but the belief in Liverpool is that he can be convinced to stay. He was even made captain in a friendly on Saturday to ensure he knows how highly he is thought of by Jurgen Klopp and the club.