Cedric Bakambu's successful season has not gone unnoticed. AS claims "Atletico have been negotiating with Villarreal for a month" though what the article actually says is they have contacted us and offered Baptistao and Oliver Torres as part of the deal in a bid to reduce the price. (Since we already have a purchase option on Baptistao, I'm not sure what good that actually does, unless they have offered to reduce the price of the option, but anyway).
But unlike Vietto last season, where the player definitely wanted to go there and no other clubs were nosing around, Bakambu has been generating interest from EPL and Serie A clubs. His release clause is €50m and I suppose the real question is will Cedric want a move on the summer. The release clause price seems high but EPL clubs have cash to spend so €35-40m offers aren't out of the question.
I'm not sure Villarreal is going to spend €6m on Baptistao--he's not done all that much this season. Oliver impressed briefly with us but was injured when he arrived in midseason. He's certainly talented, but has struggled for playing time the last few seasons.
Speaking of injuries, Villarreal's injury woes appear to have gotten a bit better: Marcelino said today that Victor Ruiz, Castillejo, Pina and Soldado should be ready for Sunday (the last three trained normally today). Musacchio and Jaume Costa should be back 'soon', while Baptistao is out for longer apparently.
And finally, it's sort of old news since Sr. Roig simply repeated in court what he had already stated in a deposition, but in the Noos case (this is the one where the ex-King's daughter and her husband are defendants), Sr. Roig testified that in 2005 or 2006 he commissioned this institute to do a study on the possibility of selling naming rights to El Madrigal. He (or the club, not sure which) paid €600,000 for the report, which said the club could get something like €36-38 million over ten years from selling the naming rights.
Perhaps Sr. Roig expected Noos would be able to help him find some sponsors, but if so, it didn't happen. As he said today, "unfortunately, we're still looking". Noos was a 'nonprofit institute' sports foundation that allegedly won contracts at inflated prices from regional government bodies, mostly in the Balearic Islands and Valencian Community, and channeled most of the money to tax havens trough a web of companies. The regional governments of these areas are supposed to have paid Noos over €6 million and got very little in return.
Sr. Roig at least got a report, but presumably expected more assistance in finding a naming sponsor, perhaps because of the political connections of the Noos principals, than he got. His testimony is more a sidebar in the case than anything else, I'd imagine. His brother Francisco (formerly president of Valencia CF) also testified today.