Jordi Alba will sign a new contract at FC Barcelona shortly unless there is a late twist. An agreement is very close and it could be finalised imminently according to SPORT's sources.
The player appeared optimistic about penning a new deal following Barça's 4-2 victory over Sevilla, although there is still one minor sticking point. Negotiations have advanced in recent days following the intervention of Josep Maria Bartomeu, who personally took over talks in order to reach a positive conclusion for all parties.
LENGTH OF NEW DEAL
As revealed by SPORT, as it was Bartomeu himself who admitted how long Alba's new deal would be: five years, or until 2024. This would see the left back retire at the Camp Nou.
Bartomeu's openness on the length of the contract, as well as Oscar Grau's input as he oversaw the financial side of the package, has seen talks advance much faster. The player has insisted that he wanted to see out his career at Barça after originally having to move to Valencia in order to get regular playing time.
ALBA'S IMPORTANCE TO THE TEAM HAS ONLY GROWN
The first meeting took place on the 26th November and since then Alba's importance to the team has only increased. This saw Barça revise their offer and present a package Alba couldn't refuse. It now appears we're very close to reaching a conclusion.
It'll be the second biggest movement Bartomeu has made in regards to the first team squad, this following on from the signing of Frenkie De Jong.
The renewal of Alba is extremely important as there's no greater left back around in world football. Plus, he has no natural replacement in the first team either. He's formed a lethal connection with Leo Messi down the flank, another factor in ensuring Alba remains at the club beyond his existing contract. Unless there's any setback, an announcement could be imminent.