One week after closing the signing of Raúl de Tomás, Espanyol continues to comb the market to find new reinforcements for Abelardo Fernández. The next priority is to find a right winger, a position that was orphaned after the departures during the last year by Leo Baptistao and Hernán Pérez. The white-and-blue club is now working to find an experienced band player, who knows the league – and therefore their adaptation is immediate – and has good footing for center-backs. At this time of January, there are talks open by two names, Ibai Gómez and Cristian Tello, who are favorites, but not the only ones on the list. Other candidates, such as Lucas Vázquez and José Callejón, have also been polled, but neither of them, for sporting reasons, wants to leave his team this January.
In the case of Ibai, 30 years and contract until 2022, it is an express request of Abelardo, with whom he shone in Vitoria. Espanyol have contacted Athletic to transfer their interest, but as far as the ARA has been aware, the Basque team is still assessing whether or not to authorize the player to leave this January. Just a year ago, he paid 3 million for Alabès. The main reluctance of the Basque team is in the same market: due to its philosophy, it has a smaller bag of players. In addition, Gaizka Garitano is reluctant to let him go despite not giving much prominence (he has barely played 30.6% of the official minutes this year). Until the Athletic agrees to negotiate, the formula for incorporating it will not be discussed. The player looks forward to going to Espanyol, because despite his affection for Athletic – and his love for the team – he is a competitive player who has not found the desired regularity in Bilbao. Since returning to San Mamés, he has not played in two games as a starter in a row. In Barcelona, a city he loves – he was there this summer with Bojan Krkic in the preseason – he has a lot of friends and he knows he'll have the confidence of coach Abelardo.
Tello's case presents even more difficulties. The first, the highest card. The second is the player's doubts in the event of a relegation. The player has signed with Betis until 2022, but half of his economic rights belong to Barça, which reserved "the right to participate in a future sale of the player". Unlike Ibai, which has no clause, Tello has: of 12 million. He also played poorly (26.9% of the minutes), which motivated him to look for a way out. The one of the Spanish would see it with good eyes because it knows Barcelona perfectly. The Blues, however, are not the only team interested in it. A proposal came from Japan this Wednesday, adding to others who are also being treated. A destination that will hardly seduce the end of Sabadell. Rubi said he did not have excess, but did not guarantee more minutes. Their fate, they say from their surroundings, could be decided by the end of the month: "It is a feasible and possible operation, but there are drawbacks and many possible combinations".