Barcelona swooped for Valencia midfielder Andre Gomes, a Real Madrid target, after Los Blancos and Los Che couldn’t agree terms.
The Catalans confirmed the capture late on Thursday night and AS reports they will pay €35m, with another €20m in variables, though €5m of each sum will go to Gomes’ former club Benfica.
Valencia paid €15m to sign Gomes two seasons ago but he has agreed a five-year contract at Camp Nou and will be presented next week after officially signing the deal.
AS adds that Valencia originally insisted on €65m for Gomes and Madrid baulked at that sum, but when Valencia indicated they would accept a lower fee plus players, Madrid’s interest returned.
Nacho, Mateo Kovacic and Marco Asensio or Jese were the players Valencia asked for but Madrid didn’t find the proposal acceptable and with James Rodriguez staying at Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid backed out.
Barca then stepped in and snapped up Gomes, said to be a player much admired by sporting director Robert Fernandez, with Luis Enrique having given his approval for the signing.
La Blaugrana also said no to paying €65m earlier in the summer, with Madrid then taking pole position for Gomes’ signature, but Barca returned to the picture after the breakdown between Madrid and Valencia.
AS notes that Gomes to Barca likely sees a return to hostilities between Valencia and Madrid, the two clubs not agreeing for much of the 1990s after Madrid met Pedrag Mijatovic’s clause.
The clubs couldn’t agree on David Villa in 2009 – the striker eventually joining Barca a year later – and didn’t find terms on Gaizka Mendieta, Roberto Ayala, Vicente, David Silva or Jose Gaya.
Florentino Perez and Peter Lim are understood to have a good relationship and that had led to a thawing in relations, but AS speculate this incident will bring a new frost between the organisations.