By Danny Wright
European giants Barcelona have confirmed that they have re-signed Gerard Deulofeu from Everton.
A statement on the La Liga club’s official English-speaking Twitter account announced that they chose to “exercise their buy-back clause” in a bid to bring the attacker back to the Nou Camp after a two-year spell at Goodison Park.
Barca’s official website also confirmed that the three-times Spain international has agreed to a two-year deal, which will expire in 2019.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) June 30, 2017
Deulofeu rose through the youth ranks of the famous Barcelona academy in the early part of his career, but only made six senior appearances for the club.
He was shipped out on loan to Everton and Sevilla before moving back to Goodison Park in 2015 after agreeing a permanent transfer.
The attack-minded winger was a key part in Roberto Martinez’s squad on Merseyside, but Ronald Koeman’s appointment as manager last summer saw Deulofeu slip out of the first-team plans as he made just four Premier League starts under the Dutchman.
That led to Deulofeu being sent out on loan to AC Milan, where he showed he has the ability to play top-level football as he scored four goals and supplied three assists in 18 appearances across all competitions.
Football Insider Verdict
Deulofeu looked like he was a really good prospect in his debut permanent season at Everton, but he’s a great example of how certain players suit certain managers. Koeman just clearly wasn’t a fan of him, which is fair enough when the Dutchman led the Toffees to a Europa League spot last term – a massive improvement on Martinez’s prior achievements. Even though things didn’t work out on Merseyside, a move to Barcelona is clearly a step up, which is very strange after the season he had. He was good for AC Milan, but didn’t show the electrifying performances that you’d expect Barcelona to want. The buy-back clause must have represented the Catalan club with a good opportunity to make a tidy profit in the future.
In other Everton news, another attacker has secured a move out of Merseyside to a regular Champions League competitor.