Spain Calling! Barcelona Starlet Fati To Play For Spain

Barcelona’s teenage sensation Ansu Fati dreams of representing Spain at the international level, and the starlet will do so soon. The 16-year-old has been granted Spanish citizenship, which means soccer freaks may see him in Spain soccer jersey during the next month’s Under-17 World Cup.

A government spokeswoman has confirmed the news about Fati’s Spanish citizenship. In a statement, she announced that Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s cabinet decided to give the Barca forward Spanish citizenship. It gives rise to the possibility of Fati wearing Spain’s home jersey. 

Born in Guinea-Bissau, Ansu Fati was eligible to play for the country where he was born, as well as Portugal. Yet, the 16-year-old decided to represent his adopted country Spain at the international level. Fati has lived in Spain with his family since he was six. Until now, he has not played an international match for any country, including his birthplace Guinea-Bissau, as his wish was to play for Spain.

  • Who Is Ansu Fati?

Barcelona’s new superstar, Ansu Fati came into the limelight a few days ago when he made history by becoming the youngest player in the 90-year-old history of La Liga to score a goal. In the same game, Fati registered an assist.

It took around seven minutes for the Barca teenager to grab the attention of 80,000-plus Nou Camp crowd and millions of soccer lovers from all over the world.

Born in Guinea-Bissau, Fati spent the first six years of his life in the tropical west African country before moving to Spain with his family. Bori, Fati’s father, who was a former semi-professional soccer player in Guinea-Bissau, set foot in Spain as a driver of Herrera’s mayor. Before Fati, it was his brother Braima who started playing for Sevilla’s academy. But soon, Fati joined his elder brother and gained the attention of soccer officials in Spain. 

According to Fati’s father, Real Madrid was the first to make an attractive financial offer, but Barcelona’s deal coupled with residency in its La Masia youth complex made the family head to Barcelona. 

  • Ansu Fati’s First-Time Debut

Fati’s came into limelight in July this year, when Paris St-Germain took aways Barca’s 16-year-old midfielder Xavi Simons. To make sure that the club doesn’t lose Fati, Barca handed him a three-year contract.

Even after getting the contract, Fati wasn’t expected into the main Barca squad, but the club’s season opener left manager Ernesto Valverde with no choice. Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele suffered injuries, which forced the manager to call Fati.

During the game, Fati was introduced as a substitute when his team was leading 5-1. In the final 10 minutes of the game, Fati impressed everyone- including Messi- with his bright touches. After the match, he was embraced by Messi.

  • Barcelona To Lose Fati For A Month 

After the Spanish citizenship, Fati is assumed to be called up by the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) for the U17 World Cup, which is scheduled to be hosted in Brazil between October 26 and November 17. If Fati joins the Spanish U17 team, then Barcelona will be without its starlet for a month. It means Fati may miss five LaLiga Santander matches, which include a game against Real Madrid.

In a recent interview, Spain coach Roberto Moreno said that RFEF officials’ efforts might ensure that Fati is available in Spain soccer t-shirt for La Roja.  

Fati gained international attention since his Barca debut last month. Right now, the 16-year-old has many fans, including Spain Under-17 coach David Gordo. According to him, the RFEF officials have been noticing Fati for the last many months. The coach stated that Fati’s profile is perfect for the Spanish national team. He also said that Fati has a bright future in the U19, U21 and senior Spanish soccer team. 

Gordo will choose 50 players for the U17 World Cup with Fati expected to be wearing Spain soccer jacket and practicing with other teammates for the next month’s World Cup.

About Fati’s absence, Barca coach Ernesto Valverde said that it could be a setback because Fati has just made into the team. He has not been called up until now, and the team will see what happens in the future, he added.

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