Barcelona were 18 seconds late submitting paperwork for four million dollar transfer target and LA Galaxy right-back Julian Araujo, the club's director Mateu Alemany has claimed, though LA Liga giants are now anxiously waiting to hear back from FIFA on whether they can officially sign him.
As of Wednesday, Araujo is still an MLS player, according to Mexican sports journalist Kery Ruiz. The Blaugranas took too long on Tuesday 'to start the paperwork' as 'they wanted to sell [Hector] Bellerín first.'
'They entered documents and allege that the system did not let them upload files,' Ruiz added. 'That why he's a few seconds l ate. This is explained to FIFA today.'
Football Espana have now claimed in a tweet that FIFA 'are expected to rule' on the transfer on Thursday.
Julian Araujo's transfer from L.A. Galaxy to Barcelona has fallen through by just a few seconds
Sources from Spain claim Barcelona started the paperwork to register the Mexican far too late
Barcelona's director Mateu Alemany claimed there was a glitch in La Liga's computer systems
Barcelona are said to have been tracking the 21-year-old Galaxy defender for some time and earmarked him as the perfect solution to their problems at right-back. Jules Kounde, Ronald Aurjo, Sergi Roberto and Alejandro Balde were all tried and tested in the full-back position but didn't do enough to stake their claims at holding the role as their own.
Araujo's scuppered move to Barca comes after Bellerin was sold to Sporting Libson, following the departure of Pedro Perro to Tottenham Hotspur on loan. The North London club have an obligation to buy the Portuguese in the summer for roughly $50million.
According to ESPN, if Araujo's transfer had been sealed then the Mexican would've been registered to play for Barca's B team, even though the club recognize the fact that the player has the potential to be involved with the first team straight away, due to their financial woes.
Barcelona weren't able to register midfielder Gavi's new contract last week due to the league's salary limits, however LaLiga president Javier Tebas said on Monday that the club did have 'some room' to maneuver this month following the departure of Memphis Depay and Gerard Pique's mid-season retirement.
Araujo stood out for LA this past season, making 33 appearances for the West Coast club
The 21-year-old made one appearance for the USMNT before switching allegiances to Mexico
Araujo is a U.S. Citizen due to being born in California and played for the United States at the youth level before earning one cap for the senior side in 2020. In June 2021, he was named to the Star and Stripes' preliminary 59-player squad for the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup but was left out of the final 23-man list.
The now-suspended USMNT head coach cited Araujo's dual citizenship and him not feeling ready to become cap-tied to his country of birth. The Galaxy player switched his allegiance to Mexico in 2021, although he's not played for El Tri since winning his third cap in a friendly against Suriname in June 2022.
Meanwhile, the Galaxy will feel a void in its starting XI if Araujo is granted permission to move to Spain, as the has been a regular in the team's lineup, following 33 league appearances in the MLS last season.
Kelvin Leerdam is the only other player in LA's squad who's a right-back by trade.