BARCELONA, Spain ( Associated Press) — Barcelona will register new signing Ferran Torres after agreeing to a pay cut for defender Samuel Umtiti, the club said on Monday.
Torres was introduced last week but was not added to the squad as Barcelona could not make a place for him without violating the Spanish league’s strict financial fair play rules.
The Catalan club said it had reached an agreement with Umtiti to extend his contract until 2026, reducing the part of the salary the French defender would receive over the remaining year and a half on his contract.
“Through this contract extension, Barcelona will be able to increase their ‘financial fair play’ quota and thereby register Torres with the Spanish league,” the club said.
Barcelona paid an initial fee of 55 million euros ($62 million) to sign Torres from Manchester City. The 21-year-old Spain forward signed a five-year deal with the Spanish club with a 1 billion euro ($1.1 billion) buyout clause.
Team captains Gerard Pique, Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba and Sergi Roberto took pay cuts last year to help the financially troubled club. Lionel Messi agreed to a 50% pay cut but that was not enough for the club to be able to keep him, leading to his move to Paris Saint-Germain.
“Barcelona would like to publicly express its gratitude to Samuel Umtiti for his willingness and the affection he has shown for the club,” Barcelona said.
Torres has not played since October due to a leg injury sustained while on international duty with Spain.
He was among Barcelona players who recently tested positive for the coronavirus but was cleared on Monday and will join the rest of the squad for the Spanish Super Cup in Saudi Arabia. The Catalan club will play Real Madrid in the semi-finals on Wednesday.
Midfielder Pedri Gonzalez also tested negative on Monday and will travel to Saudi Arabia with Torres.
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