Few players would ever turn down the chance to join Barcelona but Chelsea’s Charly Musonda has revealed that he did just that.
The winger, currently on loan at Real Betis, spoke with Pep Guardiola at Barcelona’s famous La Masia academy in 2012 but rejected the Catalan club’s advances.
On the face of it, it’s a weird decision. Chelsea admittedly won the Champions League in 2012 but this season proves that Barcelona’s structure has always been superior to that of the west London club.
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Added to that is Barcelona’s reputation for promoting youth players into the first team. That certainly can’t be said of Chelsea.
But the 19-year-old’s reasons for turning down the Camp Nou in favour of Stamford Bridge are justifiable.
“It is true that I rejected Barcelona because Chelsea also agreed to sign my brothers,” Musonda told Marca, per Sport.
“At the time, it was very important for the family that we all joined the same club. We wanted to stick together.
“Barcelona are among the best in the world, but it was important for me to have my family with me.
“Visiting La Masia was very impressive. It was a great experience that motivated me to keep working very hard. I was introduced to Pep Guardiola. It was a great visit."
Musonda has impressed during his loan spell in Spain, showcasing neat touches and fine dribbling abilities that would certainly be appreciated in Catalonia.
The Belgian is one of a number of Chelsea players currently out on loan but he is one that you would expect to have a bright future at the Premier League club.