All change at Barca
By Alex Livie
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Barcelona have confirmed there will be wholesale changes at Camp Nou in the summer, with Patrick Kluivert, Marc Overmars, Philip Cocu, Michael Reiziger and Rustu Recber all set to move on.
On the day that it was confirmed Giovanni van Bronckhorst will be staying in Spain, the club have revealed that four Dutchmen as well as Turkish keeper Rustu Recber will be allowed to head for pastures new.
It would appear as if coach Frank Rijkaard and sporting director Txiki Beguiristain are looking to reshape the squad, despite their fine finish to the campaign, and more importantly reduce the wage bill.
"We don't want them to stay," Beguiristain said of Kluivert and Overmars.
"Overmars didn't play much last year and didn't contribute much to the team.
"Kluivert is always under pressure from the crowd and this is not good for any player. Both Kluivert and Frank Rijkaard are in agreement with this.
"We are looking for players to cover both positions."
Midfielder Cocu was looking for improved terms but he was not told what he wanted to hear at a crunch meeting on Tuesday.
"He's leaving because he wants a bigger wage and bonuses," added Beguiristain to Marca.
"We have a clear philosophy on wages and we don't want to break this for any player.
"We have another player in mind to replace Cocu, who we are not revealing at the moment.
"He's not cheaper, but he's younger, and so he'd be better value for the future."
Cocu is unlikely to be short of offers, with PSV Eindhoven ready to bring him back to Holland, while Reiziger and Rustu Recber and are set to head for the exit door.
All four Dutchmen are in Dick Advocaat's Netherlands squad and the coach will hope the uncertainty does not have an effect on their performances at Euro 2004.