Nice President Reveals Phone Call From Barcelona's Bartomeu to Pull Out of Jean-Michael Seri Deal
Nice president Jean-Pierre Riviere has revealed that he received a phone call from an "embarrassed" Josep Maria Bartomeu to confirm that Barcelona were withdrawing from the deal to sign Jean Michael Seri.
A €40m deal was reportedly agreed between the two clubs for the midfielder, but Barcelona cancelled the proposed transfer when technical staff opted to back out.
Seri had originally claimed that the collapse of the move was down to Nice demanding more money, but Riviere has now confirmed that that was not the case.
"Julien Fournier, the general manager of [Nice], called me early on Wednesday [August 23], at about 09:00 and said: Jean-Pierre, I do not understand, I received a call from Barcelona and they told me to stop the Seri transfer," Riviere told Canal+.
"In the afternoon, Bartomeu called me, a little embarrassed, and said to me: 'This is the first time that it has happened to us. Our staff have decided not to sign Seri, but it is not a financial issue'.
"On the Thursday morning, it was confirmed definitively: they won't be going for Seri.
"And it's then that things go off. I said to Barca, 'You have messed up one of my players,' because there was a contract ready. I put myself in the place of Micka: it's his dream to go to Barca, and overnight it's broken."
Seri did not play in Nice's final Ligue 1 game before the international break due to his disappointment at having not completed the move to Barcelona.