Barcelona sign Portuguese duo Felix and Cancelo on loan

Barcelona signed Atletico Madrid forward Joao Felix and Manchester City defender Joao Cancelo on loan until the end of the season, the Spanish champions said Friday.

“Barcelona and Atletico Madrid have reached an agreement for the loan of player Joao Felix until June 30, 2024. There is no option to buy,” said the Catalan club in a statement, before then announcing Cancelo’s arrival.

Barcelona loaned winger Ansu Fati to Brighton and defender Clement Lenglet to Aston Villa earlier Friday to help create room to accommodate their new arrivals on the wage bill and register the players with La Liga, who have strict financial fair play rules.

The Catalans also sold winger Ez Abde to Real Betis for 7.5 million euros ($8.1 million), keeping an option to buy him back and 50 percent of the value of his next sale, and loaned defender Eric Garcia to Girona.

Felix became one of the most expensive players in history when Atletico Madrid signed him from Benfica in 2019 for 126 million euros ($136 million) at just 19 years old.

The Portuguese forward, 23, failed to find consistent form in the Spanish capital and Atletico loaned him to Chelsea last season, where he also struggled.

Felix has spoken out about his desire to play for Barcelona in the past.

“The club publicly expresses their gratitude to the player for the financial effort made (to join) and his desire to wear the Barca shirt,” added Barcelona.

Atletico said Felix has signed a two-year contract extension, until 2029.

Barcelona then confirmed the arrival of Cancelo on loan from Manchester City, also with no option to buy.

The club needed a specialist right-back, using central defender Jules Kounde in that position for the majority of last season.

Cancelo, 29, fell out of favour at Manchester City last season, joining Bayern Munich on loan in January.

The Portugal international was pivotal for City coach Pep Guardiola in previous years as he played an important role in two Premier League triumphs.

Cancelo signed a five-year deal with City in February 2022 but less than a year later Guardiola sent him to Bayern.

Barcelona have had a busy transfer window, signing Ilkay Gundogan, Oriol Romeu and Inigo Martinez, while Ousmane Dembele, Franck Kessie and others departed. -BSS

Rent for add