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Transfer Rater: Lucas Moura to Arsenal

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Pep Segura on Coutinho, Dembele: 'We hope they will wear a Barca shirt'

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Barcelona's general manager said the club are close to completing deals for Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele after Wednesday's 2-0 Super Cup loss to Real Madrid, although the claim has been strongly rejected by Borussia Dortmund.

Liverpool's Coutinho has been the subject of two bids from Barcelona, the most recent worth €100 million turned down last week.

However, Coutinho responded by handing in a transfer request and Mundo Deportivo has reported that the Brazil international has told the Premier League side he will not play for them again.

Dembele, meanwhile, is currently serving an internal suspension at Dortmund after skipping training last week in a bid to force through a move to Camp Nou.

In a statement to the stock market last week, Dortmund confirmed they had rejected Barca's bid for the France international, reported to be in the region of €100m.

Kicker also reported on Thursday that there has been no contact between Dortmund and Barcelona in the past nine days.

Philippe Coutinho celebrates his second goal.
Philippe Coutinho has handed in a transfer request at Liverpool.

"We know that we have to strengthen the team and that's what we will continue to do in the coming days," Barca general manager Pep Segura told TV3.

"We have to help the team. We're close [to Coutinho and Dembele], we're talking about the conditions but until everything is finalised, we can't say anything else. We hope they will wear a Barca shirt."

Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke, however, has said that he was surprised to hear Segura's comments.

"Barcelona have so far not come a millimetre closer to their wish of completing the Dembele transfer," Watzke told kicker. "I can offer no explanation for what he [Segura] has claimed. The only reason I could think of is that Real left his side dizzy in the Super Cup."

The Super Cup loss to Madrid -- 5-1 on aggregate -- has served to further expose the need for the Blaugrana to add to their squad after Sergio Busquets had called for attacking signings earlier this week following the transfer of Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain for €222m.

"It's clear signings are needed," Busquets told a news conference. "We have to strengthen the squad. We need attacking players to compensate for Neymar.

"But every position can be strengthened and the more quality players that come in the better. I hope the best players arrive and that they generate competition and give the coach decisions to make."

The arrival of Coutinho and Dembele would see Barca's summer spending rise above the €300m mark, following the signings of Marlon Santos, Gerard Deulofeu, Nelson Semedo and Paulinho.

Samuel Marsden covers Barcelona for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @SamuelMarsden.

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