Munir El Haddadi signs new Barcelona contract

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Chelsea or Arsenal must now pay €35 million to secure the services of Barcelona forward Munir El Haddadi after the Spain international signed an improved contract with the Catalan giants.

Barcelona confirmed that the 19-year-old has put pen to paper on the new deal via a statement published on their official website, which reads: "Munir El Haddadi has signed an updated contract in which his release clause, in accordance with the new agreement, rises to 35 million euros.

"The signing took place at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper and also present were the sporting vice-president Jordi Mestre and director of football Andoni Zubizarreta."

Release clause rise

The Express claim that Barcelona had originally quoted £9 million for Munir, who earned his first Spain cap in September, but that price has now risen by a further £19 million following the teenager’s meteoric rise.

Munir has started in six La Liga matches under Luis Enrique this season, scoring one goal, and appears to have a bright future ahead of him.

Competition at Barcelona

At the Camp Nou, however, he faces unprecedented competition for a first-team place as the season progresses. Munir’s opportunities have become increasingly limited since Luis Suarez made his competitive debut in October, while Neymar and Lionel Messi, the two superstars in the team, are virtually undroppable.

Next in line for a spot is the tenacious Pedro, a proven La Liga goalscoring winger, followed by Munir and his 19-year-old teammate Sandro Ramirez, who has also impressed this season.

Arsenal reportedly wanted to sign Munir on loan for the season-half of the season, to provide the likes of Olivier Giroud and Danny Welbeck with some additional competition.

Chelsea, meanwhile, were only interested in signing the youngster on a permanent deal.

Barcelona protecting themselves

That Barcelona have not extended Munir’s contract beyond it’s current expiry date - June 30, 2017 - suggests this may have been a move to ensure that, if they decide to sell in the near future, they get the best possible price for the young forward.

But a move to England, for the time being, currently looks out of the question - unless either Chelsea or Arsenal suddenly decide he’s worth the £28 million investment.

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