The 24-year-old’s future at Camp Nou is under the scanner as he is yet to commit to new deal at the club, with his current contract expiring at the end of the current campaign.
Premier League outfit Newcastle, who have entered a new era of leadership following a takeover, have held talks with Dembele’s entourage over a five-year contract, while their top flight rivals Manchester City have also registered interest in his services.
Even though Dembele has had to deal with nagging injury issues throughout his Barcelona spell, coach Koeman still rates him highly and stressed the aim is to renew his contract as he plays an important role under him.
“The most important thing is that we want him to stay”, Koeman told a press conference, while discussing Dembele’s future at Barcelona.
“He is important and has quality.
“He is a different player and the objective is to renew his [contract].”
Koeman added that he is yet to discuss with the Barcelona hierarchy about what they should do if the Frenchman decides not to sign a new deal at the club.
“Another thing is, if he does not want to renew, we have to talk as a club what is the best way to deal with it.
“We have not yet talked about what our strategy will be if he does not renew.”
With Dembele having entered the final year of his contract at Barcelona, the pressure is on the Catalans.