Dembele set to stay at Barcelona | Chelsea interested in summer deal

Ousmane Dembele is set to stay at Barcelona until the end of the season, despite Chelsea make an enquiry about signing the winger on Deadline Day.

The Blues reignited their interest after hearing his potential move to Paris Saint-Germain had stalled.

But the lack of time, plus financial obstacles, meant a deal was always going to be tough to conclude on Monday, and talks ultimately failed to progress.

Chelsea remain interested in signing Dembele in the summer, when he will be a free agent.

The France international’s contract expires at the end of the season, and he can now speak to clubs about signing a pre-contract ahead of a transfer in the summer.

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Back in June last year, Ousmane Dembele scored for France against Wales in a friendly

Dembele was in Paris on Monday but returned to Barcelona after his potential move to PSG failed to materialise.

Barcelona officials told Dembele to find another club earlier this month after he decided not to accept a new contract that included a pay cut.

But the 24-year-old made it clear he wanted to stay at the Nou Camp and see out the remainder of his deal.

Dembele joined Barcelona for £97m plus add-ons from Borussia Dortmund in August 2017, but has struggled to justify his price tag due to a series of injuries and has started only six matches this season.

Dembele accuses Barca of ‘blackmail’

Dembele said last week he will “not give in to blackmail” after the club told him he must leave in the January transfer window.

The 24-year-old said on Instagram: “As of today, I’m going to answer honestly without giving in to any form of blackmail.

“I forbid people from thinking that I’m not committed to this sporting project. I forbid people from attributing intentions to me that I’ve never had.

“I forbid people from speaking for me or my agent, who I have total confidence in. I’m still under contract, I’m fully committed and at the disposal of the club and my coach.

“I’ve always given everything for my team-mates and also for all the fans. That’s not going to change now. I’m not a man who cheats and even less so one who’s used to giving in to blackmail. Love can certainly be a variant of blackmail.”

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