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Ousmane Dembele reveals when he told Xavi he would sign new Barcelona contract

Ousmane Dembele at Barcelona
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The France international rejected the chance of a lucrative free transfer to another club in the summer by committing to Barca instead.

Ousmane Dembele has revealed he told Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez that he would sign a new contract in December 2021.

It may have taken until July this year for the winger to put pen to paper on the deal, but Barca was always his first choice.

Xavi was always keen to keep Dembele. Even after the club exiled the Frenchman in January and tried to force a sale after failed contract talks, the coach brought him back to the fold. His faith was awarded as Dembele’s excellent form helped Barcelona climb from ninth to second in LaLiga last season.

“With Xavi’s confidence, I had to stay. I remember a meeting between him and me in December, and I told him that I was going to sign my contract,” Dembele told RMC Sport.

“I feel good in the locker room with all these young people. This whole team is developing well. I’ve always told Xavi I wanted to stay at the club. There were negotiations, and I didn’t settle, but I didn’t tell myself I would leave the club. I’ve been here for the past five years, and it’s better now because everyone is talking about football.

“I’ve always dreamed of playing for Barcelona. I have realized my dream, and I’m very happy.”

Dembele has managed  two goals and four assists in eight appearances across all competitions for Barcelona this season.

The 25-year-old might play on Thursday evening when France take on Austria for a UEFA Nations League match in Group A1.