Barcelona completed the signing of Andre Gomes from Valencia last week in a deal worth £41.7 million.
The Spanish champions beat Juventus and Real Madrid to the 22-year-old, who this summer won Euro 2016 with Portugal.
It caps a great few weeks for the midfielder - at such an early stage in his career, he’s now in a position to compete for major trophies on a yearly basis.
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Gomes will also join the exclusive list of players who can say that they’ve had the opportunity to play alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
The former Benfica player admitted that the opportunity to play with Messi, among Barca’s other stars, influenced his decision to choose the Camp Nou over the Bernabeu.
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“I get to perform with Messi, I'm also happy to appear with Neymar and [Luis] Suarez," he said, per Marca.
"Playing with these players, and [Andres] Iniesta too, was part of my decision."
Conversation with Ronaldo
Gomes, who is good friends with Ronaldo, their relationship no doubt bolstered by Portugal’s recent success in France, has revealed what the Madrid star said to him after learning Gomes had chosen Barcelona.
Was Ronaldo disappointed? No.
But Gomes is fully aware that Ronaldo is now his biggest rival when the new season gets underway.
“I spoke with him and he congratulated me, but I'm still a rival of his - like I was at Valencia, and on the pitch there is no friendship,” Gomes said, per Sport.
“In the national team I can enjoy being with him - but now I want to enjoy being with Messi."
Learning from Iniesta
Though he’s incredibly lucky to call the best two players of the 21st century teammates, Gomes faces stiff competition to start for Luis Enrique’s team.
He made 30 appearances for Valencia last term but now finds himself surrounded by World Cup and Champions League winners.
Gomes, however, doesn’t see it as competition. Instead, he’s grateful to be in a position to learn from one of the finest midfielders in the game: Andres Iniesta.
“Iniesta is a reference for me in all senses,” the Portuguese star added. “Now I want to enjoy being with him every day.”
Injection of youth
Gomes became Barcelona’s fourth signing of the summer, after the arrivals of Denis Suarez, Samuel Umititi and Lucas Digne.
Enrique clearly felt the need to inject youth into his side - Digne is 23, the rest are 22 - as he attempts to regain the Champions League crown Barcelona lost to Madrid.
Was Gomes right to join Madrid over Barcelona? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!
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