Having all but conceded second place in Ligue 1 to Lens, Marseille are now likely to have to go through a play-off at the end of August in order to secure their spot in next year’s Champions League. This uncertainty with regard to their European future is now likely to have an impact on their transfer dealings this summer, as outlined by L’Équipe this morning.
Club president Pablo Longoria and Director of Football Javier Ribalta had established a plan of action for every possible finishing position last month – second, third and fourth.
Several potential moves have been put on stand-by, according to L’Équipe, and in particular the free transfer of Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha. The Ivorian international has been offered to OM, but the club have yet to respond favourably and no contract has been offered to the 30-year-old as of yet. Zaha was previously reported to be the club’s priority signing should they return to European football’s premier competition.
The club’s priority is also to cut down the wage bill and raise funds this summer, with plans for seven to eight departures and as many arrivals in place. The idea is to turn a profit on players such as Mattéo Guendouzi, Leonardo Balerdi, and perhaps even Cengiz Ünder. Marseille are also optimistic on keeping Alexis Sánchez – renewal talks for the Chilean veteran began ten days ago – although a potential Champions League spot and his salary demands will be decisive.