Barcelona have reached an agreement with Borussia Dortmund for the €150 million transfer of Ousmane Dembele, according to multiple reports, although the German club’s chief executive has declined to confirm them.
A base fee of €120 million was first reported on Thursday by BeIN Sports, and French newspaper L’Equipe, German outlet Bild, and Spanish reporter Guillem Balague all said the deal would reach €150m, with €30m of that in bonus payments.
However, Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke said the club would not be commenting on the Dembele situation ahead of the Champions League draw in Monaco on Thursday and cast doubt on the foreign reports.
Asked about L’Equipe’s report by Sky Germany, Watzke said: “I can’t confirm it. We will not make any comments.
“A lot of nonsense has been written by L’Equipe in recent weeks. We would also not comment on this [if there had already been a meeting between BVB and Barcelona]. We’ll see them at the draw.”
And after the Champions League ceremony — in which Dortmund were drawn against Barcelona’s rivals Real Madrid — Watzke also insisted that nothing was yet official.
“A decision is nearing. But none has been made yet,” he said. “It would be good if we had clarity at the weekend.
“We are not the club making those things public. There is no fixed agreement. We’ll see about the rest.”
Balague reported that Demebele would sign a five-year deal, while Bild said that an announcement would come at a news conference on Friday.
Dortmund will have to make a statement to the German stock market, which will not reopen until Friday morning. The club then have an annual financial news conference, which takes place at noon on Friday.
Dortmund have already rejected a Barcelona offer for Dembele, reported to be around €100m, but have said they are willing to sell if their price — reported to be in the region of €140m — is met.
The reported fee would be the second-largest in history after Neymar’s €222m move from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain this summer, with the Catalan club using much of the money earned in that deal to sign the 20-year-old France international.
German outlet Kicker previously reported that Dembele’s previous club, Rennes of Ligue 1, will receive a windfall of €20m from any fee north of €80m.
Earlier on Thursday, France coach Didier Deschamps omitted Dembele from the squad for upcoming World Cup qualifiers because he has not trained with Dortmund amid the transfer dealings, but said he was not angry with the player.
“I can’t take someone who’s inactive and who doesn’t know what tomorrow will bring,” Deschamps said.