Former Barcelona vice-president Jordi Mestre has revealed that the club has tried to sign both Thibaut Courtois and Alvaro Morata in the last few years.
Belgium international goalkeeper Courtois was a target in 2013 while the Belgian goalkeeper was still at Atletico Madrid before he left for Chelsea and, eventually, Real Madrid
Morata, meanwhile, has been eyed during the January transfer window of 2019 before agreeing a transfer from Chelsea to Atleti.
And Mestre has opened up to the pursuits of players by the Blaugrana, with a former director of soccer, Andoni Zubizarreta, having to lead the club in the direction of Courtois seven years ago.
“There was insistent talk of registering Courtois, but they eventually brought in [Marc-Andre] ter Stegen at the discretion of Zubizarreta,” Mestre told Mundo Deportivo.
On Morata he added:”After the opinion of the players, bringing Morata could have created a potential conflict in the locker room. He would have liked to play and not be a replacement.
“There were two problems with Morata – one concerned controlling the club’s budget that Pep Segura was in charge of and he was always extremely careful about not going over budget.
“Then there was the sporting side – Morata was a global and, thus, not the kind of player who should be sat on the bench in every game.
“He didn’t want to be a substitute and the air inside the squad was very good – if he’d joined, it would have unsettled that however, as I say, it’s not the players who make these decisions.”
Mestre was a vice president at the club from 2014 before the summer of 2019, when he left his post ‘professional reasons’.
He recently stated he felt isolated and”thought the opposite to everyone else.”
“I felt I’d been fighting an uphill battle for some time,” he added.
I realised that I was the only one who thought in a particular way.
“The soccer committee which comprised Josep Maria Bartomeu, Javier Bordas, Silvio Elias, and Xavier Vilajoana were not in agreement with me or with Pep Segura in his role as general manager. I was the only person who defended him and I felt alone.”