Joao Felix reportedly turned down offers from Manchester United and Liverpool to join Barcelona on loan from Atletico Madrid in the latter stages of the summer transfer season.
On transfer deadline day, the 23-year-old completed a loan deal to Camp Nou, and he made his debut for the Catalan giants as a substitute against Osasuna in La Liga on Sunday.
There is no commitment to buy the Portugal international, and he extended his contract at Wanda Metropolitano until June 2029 prior to his loan switch, so he will return to Atletico next summer.
Over the summer, there was a lot of talk about Felix’s future, with a number of clubs interested in him, including those from the Saudi Pro League.
According to Mundo Deportivo, Manchester United and Liverpool, as well as Aston Villa and Al-Hilal, made proposals for the Portuguese during the summer window, but he turned them down in order to pursue his dream move to Barcelona.
According to the source, Felix was not a priority for Barcelona head coach Xavi, but he was still desperate to join the La Liga champions.
Man United showed high interest to loan him. On the other hand, Liverpool were said to be willing to offer Atletico the chance to sign Darwin Nunez as part of a swap deal for the forward.
Joao Felix joined FC Barcelona on Loan
Felix is likely to have a pay cut to achieve a move to Camp Nou. He may receive €400,000 (£342,000) for the season.
Due to doubts over his future at Wanda Metropolitano, the attacker did not play for Atletico in the early stages of the season.
Felix allegedly had an argument with Diego Simeone, the head coach of Atletico Madrid, during the end of the previous season. Those arguments led to his loan move to Chelsea in January.
The attacker scored four goals in 20 appearances for the Blues, who turned on the opportunity to sign him permanently during the summer transfer window.
Felix joined the Red and Whites from Benfica in the summer of 2019, and he has played 131 times for the club, scoring 34 goals and contributing 18 assists.
The attacker is presently training with the Portugal side ahead of their forthcoming Euro 2024 qualification matches against Slovakia and Luxembourg on September 8 and 11, respectively.
In the later stages of the transfer window, Barcelona also recruited Joao Cancelo on loan from Manchester City, while Inigo Martinez, Ilkay Gundogan, and Oriol Romeu arrived earlier.