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Deco talks Felix, Cancelo, Xavi, Balde, Messi, Yamal, Roque at Barcelona presentation

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Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images

Deco’s integration into FC Barcelona’s management is a story well crafted.

The former midfielder, who spent four seasons at Barcelona, is now heading the sporting department and while speaking at his presentation today, he explained that he has always dreamed of returning to the club after ending his playing career.

“As a player, I dreamed of being at Barça and I achieved it. Now I’m back and it’s very special. These years I have built a history that I now leave behind, it’s a very big responsibility to be here,” the former defender was quoted by Mundo Deportivo.

Deco’s first job at Barcelona this summer was hectic. As Barcelona look to balance their finances, Deco’s hands were mostly tied, but he did a fantastic job, to say the very least. 

“The objectives are to win. We wanted to have a competitive and balanced squad. The great objective is to win, there is no other,” he explained.

“My football idea has always been the profile of Barça; play with possession. Have high-level players, with different abilities. When I go to watch a match I like to see high-level players. 

“Everything is a phase of transition. Barça are a winning team and has had the best years of the club after my departure. It has been a generation that has been marked as a team. 

“Transitions are always difficult, teams are not eternal. I think the transition was done well. It took us a while to win, but we are on the right path,” he added.

A month ago, Barcelona confirmed that Mateu Alemany would leave the team at the end of the summer transfer market. While speaking about his take, Deco said:

“I know that you like to personify things. Mateu has been the person who led the whole ‘Fair Play’ issue these years. There are already people in the club who understand it. Mateu did a great job, but he made his decision for the future. We will continue working the same.”

“Mateu has a different background. He has been president and director of clubs. I come from a different world. I have learned about negotiation and in life we ​​are always learning,” he said.

Meanwhile, Xavi’s renewal has been the talk of the town of late and while shedding light on the same, he added, 

“We have been teammates. He knows about training and I know about management. If we talk about football we understand each other. He earned his renewal. He is a club man. He has to renew because he earned it.

“Don’t worry, when he renews, you will know. We are happy.” 

Deco was the centre of attention as Barcelona finalized the deals for Joao Felix and Joao Cancelo and the sporting director says that they are the players who will be very important for the team.

“They arrived at the last minute and they are players who contribute a lot to the squad. They have to demonstrate their abilities here. Barça has the ability to inspire. We expect a lot from them, but the season will tell us how they progress things.”

On signing young players, he explained, “The additions are not by chance. There is a scouting department that works hard and in grassroots football they know the shortcomings we have. 

“The market is aggressive and there are clubs with economic potential that pay absurd transfers. We have talked a lot with Alexanco. In the subsidiary, we have sold two players. All the players who have left have a buyback option. 

“Bojan will be keeping an eye on these players. We don’t have to sign for the sake of signing. Mika Faye is a different, powerful and strong centre-back. He is another profile. We have a clear idea of ​​what we have to do.”

Barcelona will resume their Champions League journey this season and while talking about it, he said, 

“Xavi knows the pressure he has. There is no obligation to win, there is an obligation to compete. We must give the tools to compete. We will always want the Champions League and win. We will not put it in the contract who must win the Champions League.” 

Lamine Yamal has been the standout player for Barcelona this season and Deco had some words reserved for the youngster.

“He is a player who has surprised us. Xavi gave him his debut last season. He is a kid who has his feet on the ground. He has a different quality. We have several young people who are protagonists. 

“He is 16 years old and the coach already knows how to manage it. From the club, we will support him so that he continues to grow.”

When asked about the contract renewals of Yamal and Alejandro Balde, he said, “The two renovations are underway. There will be news in the coming weeks.”

On contracts of Felix and Cancelo, he added, “Everyone has made efforts to come. I can’t tell you the players’ contracts, but La Liga imputes different things. Something similar happened with Dani Alves.

“Neither Cancelo nor Joao Félix have a purchase option. It is a simple one-year transfer. If they do well we will try to retain them, but for now, it is a loan deal.”

Meanwhile, he also talked about Vitor Roque, “We always want to bring him as soon as possible. Vitor Roque’s plan is that he can only come in January or next year. 

“Not coming sooner has been due to a negotiation issue with Athletico Paranaense and we had to accept.”

He also added that Barcelona do not pay representative commissions. “There is compliance in the club that does not allow it to have two different contracts. What it had with the club in the past has already been fixed and there is no problem.”

Lastly, he had some words reserved for Lionel Messi. “Leo is a friend. I am very fond of him. Now I talk to him less, because he is far away. We all wanted to have Leo but it has not been possible due to situations that we already know. 

“He is the best footballer in the history of the club. club. I see him happy and enjoying himself at Inter Miami. As a Barcelona fan and a fan of Leo, I wish him the best.”

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