JUST IN: Vermaelen pictured in Vissel Kobe shirt
- Belgian top-tier source Kristof Terreur publishes a photo of the veteran defender on his Twitter.
- He reveals Vermaelen has signed a deal until December 2021 with the Japanese side.
- Sergi Samper, David Villa and iconic midfielder Andres Iniesta are all plying their trade for Vissel Kobe.
This is really happening! Former Barcelona player Thomas Vermaelen has been spotted in the Vissel Kobe shirt. The picture is revealed by the Belgian top-tier source, Kristof Terreur. He also claims that the official announcement of the veteran defender's transfer is coming soon.
Vermaelen is said to have signed a deal until December 2021 with the Japanese side.
Vermaelen's contract with FC Barcelona expired on June 30. The veteran defender joined the Catalan giants in the summer of 2014 for €19million. He spent the 2016/2017 campaign on loan at AS Roma. Vermaelen couldn't be happy with the amount of the playing time he was getting at the Camp Nou stadium mostly due to his notorious injury history.
During his Blaugrana tenure, Vermaelen scooped four La Liga trophies, three Copa del Rey titles and one Champions League accolade. In total, he made just 53 appearances for the Catalan giants even though he lasted there for five years. Vermaelen's only goal against Malaga during the 2015/2016 campaign. Curiously, this goal earned Barca a narrow home win over their opponents.
As for Vissel Kobe, they signed Iniesta a year ago. The midfield maestro is currently the club's captain and one of the most iconic figures in Japan. Apart from Iniesta, the Japanese side have also secured the arrivals of David Villa and Sergi Samper, two other ex-Barcelona stars.
Vermaelen is set to be officially presented as a new Vissel Kobe player on Saturday, July 27. Curiously, Barcelona play a friendly against Kobe on the same day. Kick-off is at 11:00 AM CET.
WATCH ALSO: Andres Iniesta reunites with his Barca teammates ahead of Saturday's match:
Also, download this brilliant transfer news app to keep track of all big rumours & news including your favourite club and their rivals!