Barcelona are on the brink of completing the signing of deep-lying playmaker Oriol Romeu from local rivals Girona.
The 31-year-old passed his medical checks with flying colours on Monday and is now heading to the Camp Nou headquarters to sign a contract, as per Jijantes.
Last week’s report stated the Catalans had a final agreement on personal terms with the former La Masia graduate in the bag, only waiting for Girona to come on board.
It has taken Barcelona more time than expected to close things out with Los Gironistes, and they’ve finally found a satisfying formula that will see them pay north of €5 million for the Spaniard’s signature.
Up-and-coming talent Pablo Torre will take a trip in the opposite direction on loan until 2024 to sweeten Romeu’s reunion with his boyhood club.
With the official announcement expected imminently, the former Southampton star is expected to join Xavi Hernandez’s squad on a pre-season United States tour.
Romeu, albeit he wasn’t Xavi’s first option to replace Sergio Busquets, will be part of the Blaugrana travelling squad alongside Ilkay Gundogan, who was presented at Camp Nou earlier on Monday.
Real Sociedad ace Martin Zubimendi was Xavi’s preferred option to fill Busquets’ shoes, but the club’s well-documented financial turmoil rendered a move impossible.
In addition to the rising Basque star, Barcelona had a pipe dream of luring Joshua Kimmich away from Bayern Munich earlier in the summer, only to see the German’s categorical denial.
They’ll have to settle for Romeu as a short-term solution unless Franck Kessie’s highly-anticipated departure helps them raise enough funds to pursue a more high-profile target.
After bringing the prodigal son home, Barca can focus on signing a new right-back, particularly in light of Julian Araujo’s impending loan switch to Las Palmas.