As per the latest reports, Barcelona star Ousmane Dembele is unhappy at the club due to a surprising reason, and wants to leave this summer.
Dembele was not a part of boss Ernesto Valverde’s starting XI at the Camp Nou against Liverpool in the Champions League semi-finals on Wednesday, and he made an appearance as a 92nd-minute substitute in place of Luis Suarez. The Frenchman then missed a sitter immediately afterwards.
Both Valverde and captain Lionel Messi wanted Barcelona’s strongest lineup to be available for the high-profile clash, and their final choices in the starting XI confirmed the same – Sergi Roberto for Nelson Semedo at right back, Clement Lenglet for Samuel Umtiti at center back, a four-man midfield unit, and so on.
Another spectacular choice made by Valverde was to field Philippe Coutinho in place of Dembele, and to place him at left midfield instead of his usual central attacking midfield or left wing positions. It is being said that Messi also had a lot to do with this decision, and apparently that has not sit well with Dembele.
Diario Gol reports that Messi asked Valverde to add the Brazilian to the Barca starting XI, as Coutinho’s way of play in open spaces suited the team better than Dembele’s own style.
But that seems to have displeased the youngster, who was a confirmed starter less than a month ago. As per the Spanish news agency, he now feels that Messi’s support of Coutinho will further harm his chances in the starting XI, and that he hence wants to leave this summer.
FOX Sports Asia probability ratings: 1/5; It is safe to say that Dembele’s position of importance in the Barcelona setup has not declined in any manner. Valverde’s and Messi’s plans with Coutinho may just have to do with the fact that the Brazilian, who was a former Liverpool star, knows quite well as to how the English giants play.