Why and when is Barcelona director of football Mateu Alemany leaving the club?
Rumours have suggested that Alemany’s departure may be linked to Barça’s bid to bring Lionel Messi back to Camp Nou.
There’s never a dull moment at Futbol Club Barcelona these days. La Blauragrana waited until the LaLiga title was almost won to surprisingly announce that director of football Mateu Alemany would be leaving the club on 30 June.
Will Messi be part of Barça’s summer transfer window?
At first glance, it may appear to some as if his departure is somehow related to the club’s attempts to re-sign Lionel Messi from Paris Saint-Germain. After Alemany had taken up his post at Camp Nou, Barça opted not to extend the Argentinian’s contract months before he left for the Ligue 1 leaders in summer 2021. What was even more surprising was that Barcelona announced, through an official statement, that he would be working with the club during the summer transfer window, even though he will no longer technically be their employee.
Barcelona statement on Mateu Alemany’s departure
The full statement on the Barcelona website reads as follows:
“The FC Barcelona director of football, Mateu Alemany, will end his time at the Club on 30 June to begin a new professional project.
“Despite having a contract until 2024, Mateu Alemany has informed the FC Barcelona president, Joan Laporta, of his intention to take a new path in his career but at the same time assuring that he will complete the summer transfer market with the Club.
“Therefore, despite formally leaving the Club on 1 July, thanks to an informal agreement, Mateu Alemany has committed himself to completing the first team’s transfer business this summer, even if it should be at the final moments of the transfer window.
“The incorporation of Mateu Alemany into the first team’s structure following Joan Laporta’s victory in the presidential elections has allowed FC Barcelona to complete operations that appeared impossible and provide the coach with a competitive team within the confines of the ongoing financial problems. President Laporta has accepted this departure due to Mateu’s commitment to [conduct] the summer transfer business until the last moment and to be able to be consulted by the Club whenever necessary.
“FC Barcelona will shortly announce changes in the football executive structure once Mateu Alemany’s departure is announced”.
A summer of uncertainty ahead for Barcelona
The statement arguably leaves us with more questions than answers, although more light should be shed on the situation in the coming weeks. One thing that does seem clear, however, is that Barcelona look set for a summer of uncertainty, in which a director of football will be leading them forward in the transfer market despite the fact that he himself will be leaving.
The news comes as yet another blow to Laporta, who can now no longer count on any of his three closest confidants (Vice President of Finance Jaume Giró and General Manager Ferran Reverter being the other two) who were in place when he rejoined the club as president. As reported by journalist Manu Carreño, the presenter of El Larguero on Cadena SER radio in Spain, sporting advisor Jordi Cruyff is also contemplating his future with the club, meaning Alemany’s departure may not be the last.
Who could replace Alemany as Barcelona’s director of football?
Several names have already been mentioned as a possible replacement for Alemany, including that of Antonio Cordón, who previously worked as the sporting director for Villarreal, Monaco and the Ecuador national team before joining Real Betis, who he left in February.