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Zubi declares winter transfers over

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24.12.2010 13:30

Zubi declares winter transfers over

Anna Segura

Sporting Director Andoni Zubizarreta has announced that the signing of Afellay will be the limit of Barça’s transfer activity this winter and declared the squad closed.

“We have absolutely no plans to sign anybody else during this transfer window” according to the Sporting Director, speaking during the presentation of Ibrahim Afellay this lunchtime.

Afellay can add something

Zubi explained that the winter transfer window was primarily to resolve problems and in the case of Ibrahim Afellay “he was a player who was about to finish his contract and with the squad we have he looks like somebody who can add something”.

New challenge

2010-12-24_ALFELLAY_28.JPGZubi stressed Afellay’s versatility as a key reason for his signing, as well as the experience he has already gained: “he was PSV captain despite his age and he showed great footballing maturity. He’ll have to adapt to a new situation, but he’s used to meeting challenges”.

Squad is closed

Zubizarreta stressed that the squad was now closed and that although he’d considered the possibility of a centre half last summer, the performances of Fontàs, Batra and Muniesa have convinced him” we don’t need to look there right now. Those three will continue to play for the B team with options of moving up to play with the first team. We are changing the concept of first team and reserve players for a squad where every player can play with different systems and ways of playing”.

Alves, Guardiola and Thiago

2010-08-12_ENTRENO_TARDE_13.JPGDani Alves’ contract negotiations were also touched on, with Zubi explaining: “we are working every day with the negotiations, trying to find a point where we feel comfortable”. Zubizarreta also echoed President Rosell’s optimism about Guardiola’s continuing presence, whilst also revealing that “Thiagos’ contract states that we have to tell him at the end of January exactly what role he’ll have in the squad next year, but right now it’s not a direct incorporation into the first team squad”.
Zubi declares winter transfers over

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Bartomeu pleased with Moroccan link up
Although he is Dutch, Ibrahim Afellay’s family are from Morocco and Club Vice President Josep Maria Bartomeu sees this as a positive point: “in Catalonia we have a very important Moroccan community and we also have a lot of fans in Morocco itself”.

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