Dembele responds to exit reports
Posted: 16 April 2018 Time: 14:00
FC Barcelona forward Ousmane Dembele has responded to reports claiming he's set to move to the Premier League in the off-season after becoming increasingly frustrated with his development at the LaLiga giants.
Dembele, 20, arrived at Barca in August with much fanfare due to his exorbitant £104m (R1.8b) transfer fee from Borussia Dortmund as the direct replacement for Neymar - who made a world record switch to Paris Saint-Germain.
However, injuries curtailed the France international's involvement with the unbeaten LaLiga leaders and upon his return to full fitness, head coach Ernesto Valverde changed the side's tactical system from a 4-3-3 to a 4-4-2, leaving Dembele on the fringes of the starting XI.
Arsenal have been mooted as a possible exit route in French media over the past few weeks, but the fleet-footed winger who's netted just once in 18 games this season, quickly dispelled the notion.
"I'm not going to leave after just one season," he told Telefoot. "I signed a five-year contract with Barcelona. I'll be here for a long time.
"I'm not at the top of my game right now. Little by little, I will return to my best.
Dembele, whose injury problems has been cited for an alleged unhealthy diet went on to explain what he's been working on in order to regain the faith of Valverde; "I'm working on my cardio because I get tired very quickly.
"In Barcelona I've had a better lifestyle than in Dortmund," he added. "I didn't have a healthy lifestyle in Germany and I didn't get injured, so it's not because of that."