Snubbed Real Madrid, got past severe injury: 7 key things to know about Ansu Fati
Here's how one of Barca's shiniest gems made it to the first team in his 16 years of age.
Snubbed Real Madrid
The starlet could have joined Real Madrid instead of the Catalans. That's what his father, Bori Fati revealed in an interview with RAC1 right after his son made his unforgettable first-team debut.
"I had an offer from Madrid which was for a lot of money. But Albert Puig came and told me they were from Barca and had a project. In a few years, I saw what they meant. We knew it would work but we never imagined he would be playing alongside such beasts. Training with Pique.."
What's more, the youngster himself dreamt only about Barca. Patience and prudence paved the way to his childhood dream.
Recovered from a broken leg
In December 2015, the 13-year-old boy suffered a double-leg break which certainly became one of Ansu's worst moments of his teenage career. After a bad tackle from Espanyol player, he was forced to spend almost a year out of action. At the same time, this was possibly the key episode which toughened the starlet up.
Almost left Barca this summer
Before a long-awaited act of reliance by Barca, Ansu and his father were having lots of attractive offers on the table. Manchester United and Borussia Dortmund were extremely close to sealing the deal, however, Barcelona trusted in their starlet and offered a contract renewal with a juicy release clause set at €100m.
Asked parents' permission to perform at Camp Nou
According to the La Liga rules, youngsters aren't permitted to play at night without the parents' formal approval. That's one of the minor problems Ansu faced. Luckily, his parents weren't too stubborn to prevent their son from making his dream come true.
Became Barca's second-youngest player to perform in domestic league
The 16-year-old became Barca's second younger player (16 years and 298 days) to debut for the Catalans in La Liga after Vicenc Martinez (16 years and 280 days) back in October 1941. The teenager's appearance received a standing ovation from a home crowd. After that, Ansu even managed to succeed on the pitch as he almost scored his opening goal for the first team.
Keen on taking the lead and shooting
Despite his stunning display on a debut day, Ansu is often criticized for his selfishness. Fati loves to take control of the ball and do everything possible by himself rather than acting as a team player. He's a true striker but wouldn't it be a problem for the first team?
Just to mention, Ansu hit the road at his first youth team of Barcelona with 56 (!) goals in 29 (!!) games.
His passing is decent as well
However, the boy is great at creating danger for his partners as well. Earlier, Ansu often played as a creative midfielder which developed his passing skills and game vision.