Ilkay Gundogan's agent speaks out on shock Barcelona exit rumours

Ilkay Gundogan of FC Barcelona run with the ball during the LaLiga EA Sports match between FC Barcelona and Deportivo Alaves at Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys on November 12, 2023 in Barcelona, Spain.

Ilkay Gundogan’s agent has denied rumours that he held talks with representatives from Galatasaray, after reports that his client was considering a move to Turkey.

Reports emerged from Turkey that Gundogan’s agent and brother Ilhan met directors of Galatasaray ahead of the Turkish giants taking on Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

The midfielder only joined Barcelona from Manchester City over the summer and has a contract that runs until 2025 so the reports were something of a surprise and the agent has now denied them.

‘The reports in the press these days about Ilkay do not reflect the truth,’ Ilhan Gundogan said, via Mundo Deportivo. ‘I did not meet anyone from Galatasaray before the Bayern Munich game to talk about Ilkay.

‘There was no development, meeting or anything that came to us in this regard.

‘I want to make this clear. Neither I nor Ilkay can understand how this news came about. Ilkay is very happy at Barcelona and is focused on what he wants to achieve there and on his goals.’

Gundogan has quickly become a regular in Xavi’s starting XI at Barca, playing in all 13 La Liga matches so far this season and four in the Champions League as well.

The Germany international caused a hint of controversy after Barcelona’s defeat to Real Madrid last month at the Camp Nou, suggesting that his teammates were not upset enough after the defeat.

‘This is a little bit the problem,’ Gundogan told LaLiga TV. ‘There has to be more emotion, especially when you lose and when you know you can perform better, do better in certain situations and you just don’t react.’

Barca boss Xavi said that he agreed with his player, although said that the German is not yet used to the culture of his new club.

‘Conforming is not part of Barcelona’s DNA,’ Xavi said. ‘There is a demand for excellence and to win here.

‘Gundogan’s interview was spoken about within the dressing room, he clarified what he meant and there is no problem. No one has to tell us what the demands are at Barca — especially me having spent my whole life at the club.

‘We agree with Gundogan and don’t see any controversy. We lost El Clasico because we made mistakes. There was a lack of concentration and we disconnected.

‘He expressed the anger we all felt. I could have said it or someone else, but he did because his culture is perhaps different to ours.

‘If you see the defeat Bayern [Munich] suffered the other day, the captain came out, [Thomas] Müller, and said something similar. It is cultural.

‘There has been no controversy generated in our dressing room. We think the same as Gundogan. This is Barça. That’s the level of demand and excellence here. That is how it is.’

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