Xavi Hernandez has expressed his disappointment that the Blaugrana supporters disrespected Ousmane Dembele by booing him at Camp Nou during their game against Atletico Madrid. The Frenchman was the subject of audible jeers from the home crowd when his name was mentioned by the public announcer.
Barcelona signed Ousmane Dembele from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2017 for a reported fee of €105 million-plus a reported €40 million fee in add-ons. The French attacker had established himself as one of the highest-rated teenage prospects in European football during his stint with the German club and Barcelona looked to bolster their attacking options by signing Dembele.
It hasn't gone according to plan for the Frenchman as he has been subject to various injuries which have kept him from featuring consistently for the Catalan club. The 24-year-old has made 129 appearances for the Blaugrana while scoring 31 goals and registering 23 assists across all competitions.
To make things worse, Dembele, who in his last year of his deal, has not signed a new contract that will see the World Cup winner leave Barcelona at the end of the season. Xavi has asserted that he would like Dembele to be supported at the Camp Nou rather than being jeered by the home supporters.
"I would like them to support Ousmane. I'd ask them to stop booing him. The idea was for him to come on, but I decided on other things because of the red card and the way the game went. 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,” Xavi said in his post-match press conference.