Barcelona boss Xavi Hernandez has admitted that while the club couldn’t find a solution to Ousmane Dembele’s situation, he believes that the decision to reintegrate the forward will help the club. The French has been brought back into the fold after a three week exile from the Barcelona squad.
Following reports that Ousmane Dembele had rejected a contract extension, Xavi Hernandez dropped the forward from the Barcelona squad just days into the January transfer window. But with less than six months left on his current contract, the La Liga giants still struggled to get the 24-year-old off their books and reports have since revealed that the two parties have re-opened contract talks. Yet, the forward is still keen on leaving the club although he has now been reintroduced back into the squad after a three-week exile.
While the move has shocked a few fans and critics, Xavi revealed that while the La Liga giants couldn’t find the right solution to let Dembele leave, they’ve decided to utilize him for the time left. The Barcelona boss also admitted that while fans may be hurt by the contract situation and Dembele's reported refusal, he wants them to support the 24-year-old when he plays as the best solution is to do what’s best for the club right now.
"We did not find a solution with Ousmane, so the circumstances have now changed. We have spoken with the president [Joan Laporta] and made the decision [to reintegrate Dembele]. He has a contract, he is part of the squad and we are not going to shoot ourselves in the foot by not using him."
"I understand fans may be hurt by [the situation] but I encourage them to come and support the team and support Ousmane, if he plays. He is training well and has been a good professional. We have to close ranks and think what is best for the club. We think he can help us and will use him when we see convenient."