Barcelona surprised followers by announcing today, Monday, the renewal of the contract of its defender, Samuel Umtiti, after weeks of controversy over the future of the player who refused to leave the team despite his participation in a match only since the start of the current season.
The announcement constituted a surprise that may be difficult to comprehend, at a time when the Barcelona club administration was talking about trying to push the player out of the team before the end of his contract in 2023 to get rid of his huge salary and give an opportunity to contract with new players, the Catalan administration announced today the renewal of the player’s contract to 2026 .
According to a report in the Spanish newspaper “SOPRT” (SOPRT), the administration led by President Joan Laporta did not find another formula to register striker Ferran Torres except through the renewal of Umtiti’s contract.
Barcelona signed Torres a few days ago from Manchester City, but the Spanish striker was not registered because Barcelona exceeded the salary limits allowed in the Spanish League.
The Catalan club was forced to reduce the current wage block in order to make room for the inclusion of Torres in the squad; Hence the idea of renewing the Umtiti contract.
According to the Spanish newspaper, the renewal included a reduction in his current salary, with his dues being paid in installments over the remaining years of his new contract with the team.
Thus, Umtiti contributed to reducing the wage block, and giving the Catalan club management an opportunity to search for an appropriate formula for loaning the player in the future, so his salary would not constitute an obstacle to clubs interested in his services.
Umtiti joined Barcelona in 2016 from Lyon, and his participation with the team declined due to frequent knee injuries.