Sunday, August 2, 2020 at
Josep Maria Bartomeu denounces Arthur’s decision not to return to Barcelona. The midfielder has chosen to stay in his native Brazil, pending his transfer to Juventus, and not to play Champions League football with the Catalans this month. Barcelona sees absence as a breach of contract and is considering steps. “This is a lack of respect towards his teammates,” Barcelona president emphasized on Sunday Sport.
“The selection of Barcelona wants to show up in the Champions League. And it is also a lack of respect towards the club ”, Bartomeu continues. “It is not logical that a footballer deliberately drops out when such an important prize is at stake. It is unjustifiable and completely incomprehensible. ” Barcelona will play in its own Camp Nou against Napoli next Saturday. The first game in Naples ended in 0-0. The remainder of the tournament will be played on Portuguese soil.
Arthur did not play for a minute after his transfer, which would start after the Champions League participation of Barcelona, was announced: his last performance was a four-minute substitution against Celta de Vigo (2-2) on June 27. He was expected back in Catalonia early this week for a corona test and resumption of training. However, Arthur announced by telephone that he feels being treated unfairly, as he was reportedly required to make a transfer to Serie A as part of the transfer from Miralem Pjanic.
Arthur can count on little compassion from Bartomeu. The sports director points out that the Brazilian has initiated the transfer to Juventus himself. “We are talking about a footballer who, due to his financial requirements, was unable to sign a new contract with Barcelona,” Bartomeu explains. “He had a better offer in his pocket and we studied that. Barcelona could not match that proposal and he expressed his wish to leave. At that point, everything accelerated. “
Barcelona and Arthur agreed, according to Bartomeu, that he would stay with the club until the end of the Champions League. “It is a footballer with an important role in the team and he was able to help us. But he did not return after his mini vacation. That is unacceptable behavior. There is no argument for his groundless absence. He said, “I will not return, I will stay in Brazil.” No one from the club has given permission. ”
The disguised exchange deal between Arthur and Pjanic was, according to various Spanish media, initiated by the board of Barcelona not for sporting reasons, but to get the budget of this season in order. The attitude of Arthur, who was previously yawned on the reserve bench, is also not understood by Barcelona because Pjanic remains committed to Juventus in the meantime.