Football News

Ansu Fati reveals he rejected offers from abroad to sign new six-year deal with Barcelona

By Ben Green

Published: 16:32, 21 October 2021

Barcelona wonderkid Ansu Fati has revealed he spurned offers from overseas to pen a new six-year contract at the Camp Nou.

The 18-year-old sensation was attracting interest from abroad prior to agreeing fresh terms in Catalonia with his previous deal set to expire next summer.

However, speculation on his future has been well and truly put to bed, with the teenager agreeing a bumper six-year deal that includes a €1billion release clause.

Fati is the second Barca tyro to be rewarded with a new long-term contract this month after midfield gem Pedri committed himself to the club until 2026.

As part of Fati’s new deal, Barcelona held a press conference unveiling his new shirt, with the La Masia graduate inheriting Lionel Messi’s No. 10 jersey.

The Argentine legend left Barcelona over the summer for PSG after financial restrictions prevented him from agreeing a new contract at his beloved club.

So, the pressure now falls on Fati to succeed the club’s still-cherished maestro, who says he is not at all fazed by taking on the Messi mantle.

“It’s true that the No. 10 jersey has been worn by Leo [Messi] and many players but I’m calm,” Fati said about inheriting the No. 10 shirt. “I know what I can bring to this team.

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“For me it’s not a pressure. No one is going to be like Leo, no one is going to be like [former captains Carles] Puyol or Xavi [Hernandez]. No one is going to equal what Leo has done. I’m going to follow my own journey. I still haven’t done anything. I hope I can have a career like they have had.

“Any player could have worn the No 10. I’m grateful that the captains offered me the number and luckily, I got it. It’s an extra motivation for me. I don’t look at the number but focus on what I can do on the pitch to help the team.”

Fati, who has netted 15 goals and registered six assists across 48 appearances for Barca in his nascent career, is seen as the future of the club alongside fellow precocious starlets Gavi and Pedri, with the trio all already first-teamers at the club.

And Barca can thank their lucky stars that Fati wasn’t tempted by the allure of venturing overseas and possibly turning out in the Premier League, with the soon-to-be 19-year-old revealing that he rebuffed approaches from abroad prior to signing a new deal.

He continued: “Yes, I’ve had offers from abroad. But my dream was to be here.

“From the first day I told [agent] Jorge Mendes that my first option was always to stay at Barca. He understood it perfectly and I am very happy that the club has trusted me.”

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