Barcelona Star Wants Out In January: 3 Potential Destinations Including Chelsea| Opinion

Memphis Depay has reportedly requested Barcelona to allow him to leave on a free transfer in the January transfer window.

The Netherlands international, 28, was strongly linked with an exit over the summer and it looked as if Barcelona were keen to offload him. However, he could not find a club that suited him and had to stay put at the club.

According to Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo (h/t The Express), Manchester United and Tottenham have been alerted by the possibility of Memphis Depay leaving Barcelona during the mid-season trading period.

Depay signed for Barcelona on a free transfer after leaving Lyon in the summer of 2021, but after initially starting well under then-manager Ronald Koeman, he has not played a key role under current boss Xavi Hernandez. The arrival of Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich in the summer pushed him down the attacking pecking order, limiting him to just three appearances this season.

In addition, he got injured during the international break with the Netherlands in late September and is yet to reappear for the Catalan club. With Depay no longer the first-choice attacker under Xavi, he will demand that the club release him in the next transfer window, allowing him to join a club without involving any transfer fee, the report adds.

With that in mind, here are the three potential destinations for Memphis Depay should he leave Barcelona.

#1 Manchester United

Erik ten Hag wants to add to his striker options in January to aid his rebuild at Manchester United. With Cristiano Ronaldo’s future still up in the air, Anthony Martial continually struggling with fitness problems and Marcus Rashford more suited on the left flank than through the middle, a new striker would be welcomed with open arms by Ten Hag.

Memphis Depay, thus, becomes a viable target for Man United. The Dutchman has put behind his ill-fated reign at Old Trafford and grown as a footballer over the years, rebuilding his career with Lyon. He has the qualities and experience to do the job for the Red Devils, with Ten Hag perhaps having the advantage in convincing his Dutch compatriot to join forces at Old Trafford.

Also, Depay would think he has unfinished business at Man United due to his previous stint not going according to plan.

#2 Chelsea

Chelsea must join the race for Depay’s signature should Barcelona grant his wish to leave in January.

The Blues have struggled for goals this season, with summer signings Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Raheem Sterling yet to fire on all cylinders. Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic have not been consistent, while young striker Armando Broja is still to enjoy a run in the first XI.

Going by their problems in front of goal, Graham Potter would be wise to snap up Depay on a short-term deal. In Depay, Chelsea would get someone who knows where the goal is having spearheaded Lyon’s attack for the best part of three years before signing for Barcelona in 2021.

The Netherlands star ticks a lot of boxes for Potter’s possession-based system at Stamford Bridge, and at 28, he is readymade to step straight into the side.

#3 Newcastle United

Newcastle United have enjoyed an exponential rise in stature under the new ownership, thanks to their brilliant strategy and recruitment drive.

In Bruno Guimaraes, Alexander Isak, Dan Burn, Sven Botman and Nick Pope, the Magpies have made some shrewd signings since January 2021. And with the club inside the top four, Eddie Howe has every right to think he’ll be backed in the winter transfer window.

Despite splashing big on Isak in the summer, Howe wants to add another striker to his squad as he looks to manage the workload of Callum Wilson. Memphis Depay, in that regard, would be an ideal fit for Newcastle.

Depay is far from being a spent force and would improve any team, let alone Newcastle. While he has remodelled his game into more of a centre-forward in recent years, the Barcelona man can play on either of the flanks and can also do a job as a number 10, playing just off the striker.

Such qualities could benefit the Magpies, and in return, Memphis Depay gets a club to stabilise his career.

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