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Barça’s €35m Dembele Chase Doused; to host Arsenal

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Stade Rennais has rejected FC Barcelona’s alleged €35m chase for starlet Ousmane Dembele.

18-year-old Dembele has been making headlines in French Ligue 1 this season, his first as a professional, haven scored nine goals so far.

According to France Football today, Barça followed up their recent scouting trips to France with a firm offer for the player.

The bided €35m was, however, knocked back by Rennais.

Recent reports indicate Barça Sporting Director, Robert Fernandez, attended Rennais’ 4-1 victory over Nantes last weekend to watch the lad play.

It was one of several trips he apparently made to watch the player who has featured for France at U-17, U-18 and U-19 levels.

Dembele only signed his first professional contract with the Ligue 1 club at the end of last year, but has entered the spotlight after a series of impressive displays in the French top flight.

Barça are not alone in their pursuit of the player however, with Bayern Munich and Manchester City also apparently present at Roazhon Park on occasions this season.

Meanwhile, after vanquishing Getafe on Saturday afternoon at Camp Nou, FC Barcelona’s next challenge will not be in La Liga, but in the UEFA Champions League, in which they will host Arsenal in the second leg of their last 16 tie on Wednesday night at 8.45pm CET.

Barça go into the match with a 2–0 aggregate advantage as they seek a berth in the quarter-finals.

Head coach Luis Enrique Martínez gave his players the day off on Sunday but on Monday morning they were back out on Tito Vilanova Field at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper to begin getting ready for Arsenal.

They will train again Tuesday at the same time, their last preparatory session before Wednesday’s match.

[sportsmo.com]


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