The press in Barcelona gathered for the presentation of new signing André Gomes on Wednesday but director Albert Soler took the opportunity to announce that Javier Mascherano had agreed a new three-year deal.
The news comes amid growing concerns that Mascherano was ready to leave the club after six years and Italian champions Juventus were offering a new challenge.
“This may not be the time, because it is André’s day, but we have reached an agreement with Javier Mascherano, who will sign a new three-year contract,” Soler confirmed.
“It took time, but we eventually knew what would happen with Mascherano. We are very happy that he will stay with us.”
The 32-year-old has been a vital player for Barcelona since joining in 2010 and coach Luis Enrique was quick to voice his opinion over whether the versatile central defender should remain at the Camp Nou.
“I’d take this opportunity to say that I hope Mascherano renews soon. He’s a vital player for us,” Enrique said during his first press conference of pre-season.
“There’s a negotiation with him and I know this will be the case. He’s key.”
It has been a good window for Barcelona with several good, youthful additions to the squad but ensuring that Mascherano remains at the club is as important as any of them.