‘Barca plan no January signings’

Josep Maria Bartomeu says that Barcelona will not be dipping into the January transfer market, nor will Lionel Messi be back ahead of schedule.

Speculation has been since the close of the summer window that the Catalans may act in the midseason transfer market, with the latest name linked being Sergio Aguero.

“There has been no contact with Sergio Aguero, I can deny this,” Vice-President Bartomeu mused this morning on Onda Cero.

“The time to renew this squad has not come. It is very balanced and competitive. As of today there is no intention to add any player in January.

“Announcing Victor Valdes’ replacement will not happen until he announces that he is leaving. When he does then we will take the relevant steps on our part, which are very clear. We hope it to be sooner rather than later.

“Will we sign two goalkeepers? We will bring in one or the other. The decision on Jose Manuel Pinto is technical and will not be made until March.

“We did not sign a defender in the summer because those we wanted were valued at a high price. Sergio Ramos is not on the market, nor are we considering him.”

Bartomeu was asked of the possibility of Lionel Messi returning from injury sooner than expected.

“He is not yet at his best and we will continue with his recovery very closely. Currently the recovery is physical and until next year he will not be discharged.

“He must leave behind any doubts, clear his mind and return fully recovered for the remainder of the season.

“He has gone to Argentina because if he was here then he would certainly ask to play. Messi always wants to play and has dragged this injury since last February.

“Does he want to leave Barca? He has said many times that he wants to end his career at Barca and since then no-one has enquired about signing the player and he is responsible for deterring those who are interested.”

Tags Bartomeu Messi Reina Ter Stegen Valdes