BARCELONA (Reuters) – Miralem Pjanic has joined Besiktas on loan from Barcelona until the end of the season, the Turkish side confirmed on Friday as the Bosnian midfielder became the latest player to leave the Catalan club.
Besiktas announced that they will pay 2.7 million euros ($3.2 million) in order to secure the 31-year-old until June 2022.
Pjanic arrived at the Camp Nou last year from Juventus, where he had been since 2016. While the Bosnia international made 30 appearances for the Barca across all competitions, he failed to hold down a regular starting spot.
Barcelona have looked to reduce their wage bill in the transfer window. Even the departure of Lionel Messi to Paris St Germain was not enough for the club to meet LaLiga’s Financial Fair Play regulations so they could register new players.
A host of players departed in the window, with Antoine Griezmann also leaving the club on deadline day, rejoining Atletico Madrid on loan.
Barcelona said publicly they were asking senior players to agree to salary reductions and payment deferrals. Gerard Pique was first to agree, permitting new signings Emerson Royal, who was then sold to Tottenham Hotspur, Memphis Depay and Eric Garcia to be registered.
Jordi Alba and captain Sergio Busquets followed suit on deadline day, meaning close-season capture Sergio Aguero could finally be registered.
($1 = 0.8425 euros)
(Reporting by Peter Hall; Editing by Toby Davis)