Friday, July 13, 2012

Affelay heads for Barca exit

Barcelona will seek to offload Ibrahim Affelay after the player's agent confirmed he is surplus to requirements.


Brahim Affelay
The Dutch forward, whose committed performances for the Netherlands were one the few highlights of the team's doomed Euro 2012 campaign, will be offered to Arsenal and Inter Milan as new Barca coach Tito Vilanova plots to wrestle the La Liga title from Real Madrid's grasp next season.
Inter are understood to have harboured an interest in the player for a number of months, but Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger appears willing to part with cash this summer following the acquisitions of Montpellier striker Olivier Giroud and German star Lukas Podolski.
Reports suggest that offers in excess of just £4.75m are being invited by Barca chiefs, but potential suitors could be deterred by the former PSV star's injury problems last term.
Affelay sat out a large portion of the 2011-12 campaign with a knee injury, which opened the door for emerging stars Isaac Cuenca and Cristian Tello to make an impression.
Vilanova has stated his intentions to put his faith in the club's current crop of youngsters next season, instead of looking to make significant captures from elsewhere.
"We don't plan to sign any big players. Just hope to have less injuries. [Isaac] Cuenca and Tello are there too, we have enough attackers," he said.