Madrid – Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven officially announced on Monday the sale of midfielder Ibrahim Afellay to Spanish champions Barcelona. Affelay, 24 – who was part of the Netherlands squad at the World Cup finals – will be eligible to play for Barca from January 1.
This is the first major deal of the European winter transfer window. According to media reports, Barca will pay PSV around 3 million euros (4.11 million dollars) for the player, who will sign a four-year contract with the Catalan giants.
Not since 2005 have Barca signed a player in winter, unlike profligate rivals Real Madrid. Coach Pep Guardiola appears to have realized that his squad is rather thin, especially now that veteran playmaker Xavi has started to pick and choose his matches due to a chronic Achilles tendon injury.