Thomas Vermaelen: 'Barcelona blocked summer exit'

Defender Thomas Vermaelen says that Barcelona prevented him from signing for a new club during the summer transfer window.

Defender Thomas Vermaelen has said that he had "no choice but to stay" at Barcelona during the summer.

Vermaelen has struggled for game time at Camp Nou since leaving Arsenal in 2014, but the Belgian international was linked with a switch to either Everton or West Bromwich Albion during the previous transfer window.

However, Vermaelen - who has a contract with Barca until 2019 - has revealed that it was "impossible" to secure an exit from the Catalan giants.

The 31-year-old told DH: "The board told me they needed four centre-backs. I didn't have a choice but to stay. Clubs tried until the very last day, like Everton, but it was impossible. I wasn't even able to negotiate.

"I'm not commenting anymore on my personal situation, the last time I did it, it turned against me."

Vermaelen has featured for Barcelona on just one occasion this season, which came against Murcia in the Copa del Rey.

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Arda Turan reacts to a missed chance during the La Liga game between Real Sociedad and Barcelona on April 9, 2016
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Barcelona33258083196483
2Atletico MadridAtletico34219454183672
3Real Madrid33208580364468
4Valencia34206862362666
5Real Betis34175125453156
6Villarreal33156124540551
7Sevilla33146134152-1148
8Getafe34139123931848
9GironaGirona34138134652-647
10Celta Vigo34129135347645
11Real Sociedad34127156054643
12EibarEibar34127153747-1043
13AlavesAlaves34132193447-1341
14Athletic Bilbao34913123742-540
15Leganes34117162841-1340
16Espanyol34912132840-1239
17Levante34813133249-1737
18Deportivo La CorunaDeportivo34610183265-3328
19Las PalmasLas Palmas3456232269-4721
20Malaga3455242251-2920

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