Barcelona, July 27 (IANS) Newly-signed FC Barcelona midfielder André Gomes on Wednesday said that he is at the Catalan football giants to fulfil his dream, as the Portuguese completed switch from Valencia for around $55 million.
The Portuguese 2016 Euro winner was dressed in blaugrana for the first time alongside club’s president Josep Maria Bartomeu shortly after signing his contract.
“I want to offer hard work, sacrifice and humility to help FC Barcelona. I am here fulfilling the dream of me and my family. Without them, I wouldn’t be here,” Gomes said, as posted by Barcelona’s official twitter handle.
“Barça relates to my way of playing football and to my identity. I am 22 and I want to grow. I have come to learn. Here, I have many references. I have chosen the best club for me. It is an honour and a privilege to wear this shirt,” the 22-year-old added.
Barcelona gave Valencia around $55 million to sign Gomes, who was wanted by reigning Serie A champions Juventus, Champions League holders Real Madrid and English heavyweights Manchester United and Manchester City and Inter Milan.
Gomes further said during his presentation that his way of playing football and his identity closely relates to the style of the Catalan side.
“I believe I have chosen the best club and I have not made a mistake. Barça relates to my way of playing football and to my identity. It is important for me is to enjoy playing football, continue learning and to adapt to Barça’s philosophy,” he added.
Barcelona’s director of professional sports, Albert Soler, said that the transfer was not planned in the initial budget, but it was an important opportunity and “the best moment to sign him.”
Furthermore, technical secretary Robert Fernandez said, “He (Gomez) is a player that has quality, youth and strength and who will help us amplify the center of the park. He has time to demonstrate his qualities and has great potential. Andre was a long-term target and we had to win the fight to sign him.”
“Welcome to Barça, André. Very happy to have you with us and certain that success will follow,” club’s president Bartomeu tweeted.
Gomes was diplomatic when asked about his favourite among forwards, his new Barcelona teammate Lionel Messi or his national captain Cristiano Ronaldo, to which he responded that they are both great players, but now priority is given to Messi and Barcelona.