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Unai Emery urges Villarreal to reject Barcelona’s interest in Juan Foyth

Villarreal manager Unai Emery has urged those in charge at the club not to allow right-back Juan Foyth to leave this summer.

Foyth is on the right-back shortlist at Barcelona and reports in Spain have suggested that personal terms have already been agreed with the 24-year-old Argentine, who has managed 71 appearances in all competitions since joining from Tottenham, initially on loan, in 2020.

He has already been ruled out of Sunday’s trip to Atletico Madrid through injury, but some fans have suggested that could be a front to disguise the transfer rumours – something Emery was having none of.

“This issue is not impacting us, but I think [selling Foyth] makes no sense since the market closes on 31 August,” Emery said. “Those who make the decisions would have to see something that the rest of us don’t see.

“Foyth will not play [against Atletico] because he has discomfort.

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“In the face of rumours, we test how the players are inside. Foyth is very happy here, very grateful to the club and to what he is experiencing with us. He gives me a lot of peace of mind. The conversation we had was just about the game.”

Barcelona boss Xavi has publicly admitted he wants to sign a new right-back this summer. His preferred signing, Cesar Azpilicueta, had been close to joining before inking a new contract at Chelsea, leaving the club forced to look for alternatives.

Foyth, who has a €42m release clause in his contract, remains tied to Villarreal until 2026.

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