FC Barcelona

Ajax director reveals why Nicolas Tagliafico's Barcelona move was blocked

Tom Gott
Tagliafico wanted to join Barcelona
Tagliafico wanted to join Barcelona / Soccrates Images/GettyImages

Ajax sporting director Marc Overmars has revealed that they blocked left-back Nicolas Tagliafico's proposed move to Barcelona because they could not find a suitable replacement.

Barça were on the hunt for a left-back to compete with Jordi Alba for minutes and Tagliafico was one of a handful of names on their radar. The Argentina international wanted the move and talks between the two clubs were held, but ultimately led to nothing.

18-year-old Alejandro Balde was offered to Ajax on loan as part of the deal, but the Eredivisie side turned it down as they did not believe the teenager was ready for such a significant role in the team.

Summing up Ajax's window, Overmars confessed that they wanted to help Tagliafico seal his dream move but could not do so amid concerns over a potential replacement.

"Tagliafico's agreement with Barça was very difficult, yes," Overmars said. "I wish Nico all the best, but we also have to make sure we don't shoot ourselves in the foot.

"If Barcelona want to sign our player on loan, then we need to have a substitute in that position."

He continued: "We want to think about the players, we're also known for that. We did that, but we didn't come up with a good solution.

"[I'm] sad for him. Tagliafico is a fantastic player. It just didn't work out."

Tagliafico has lost his spot as Ajax's starting left-back this season, starting just twice in the Eredivisie. Daley Blind has been the regular starter, but Ajax knew they needed cover for the 31-year-old and could not find the right player for the job.

Barcelona didn't bring a new left-back in when all was said and done, but that might not be a bad thing as they didn't even have enough space in their Europa League squad to register one of their January signings, right-back Dani Alves.