Girona president Delfi Geli has denied claims suggesting Barcelona are ready to plot a transfer surprise and activate the exit clause of their star man.
Reports in plenty of Spain’s biggest-selling dailies such as Marca, AS and Sport have this week claimed the LaLiga champions are ready to trigger the €15m release fee in Cristhian Stuani’s contract as the club seek to bolster their attacking options for the second half of the season.
The 32-year-old former Middlesbrough forward is LaLiga’s third highest scorer this season, netting 12 goals in 15 starts; only Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez have scored more.
However, Geli has been quick to deny the reports that a deal is close and he fully expects the player to stay at the Catalonia club until at least the end of the season.
“There is nothing to say about this,” Geli told Cadena Ser.
“Stuani is our players, he is very happy here and we are very happy to have him here, there are no other updates.
“This story does not have basis in fact, I cannot say anything else.”
Barcelona are looking for more firepower after allowing Munir El Haddadi to join Sevilla in a €1m deal earlier this month, while reports have claimed their attacking options could also be further weakened should Malcom complete a switch to Tottenham before the window shuts.
Barca are said to have rejected the opportunity to sign Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata, who is now poised to join Atletico Madrid, while Fernando Llorente is appears more likely to stay at Tottenham after they lost Harry Kane to injury.
It’s easy to see why Stuani had emerged as an option, having scored 33 times in just 47 league starts for the club, though if Geli’s quotes are anything to go by, it seems a move to Barcelona won’t be on the cards either.
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