Jean-Clair Todibo has opened up on what it’s like to train at Barcelona with some of the best players in the world.
The French center-back offered a great story on how midfield legend Sergio Busquets made him question his own ability during his early days at the club in an interview with French magazine Onze Mondiale.
“I learned well (laughs). When you’re out on the pitch, if you make two touches when you should have made one, it’s immediately noticeable when you’re in the middle of great players. The first few months were weird, I questioned myself,” he said.
“Yes, you arrive at training, you see Busquets who doesn’t lose any ball in the session. You arrive, you lose four, five, six… Whereas five or six, in a training session, you tell yourself it’s nothing. In any case, in Toulouse, you lose six, they tell you “it’s nothing.” But I’m not lying to you. When I saw Busquets didn’t lose a single ball in practice while I lost six, I had to question myself.
“I was thinking, ‘How does he lose no balls and I’m out here losing balls?’ And then I would try to correct my football. I was thinking, ‘Why am I losing the ball and he’s not?’ And I would watch what he was doing, what other people were doing. I watched the moves at practice, what other people were doing, and I tried to adapt. I tried my best to get up to speed. You have to get on the same level anyway, or you’re out.”
Todibo arrived at Barcelona from French side Toulouse in January 2019. However, he struggled for game time during his time at the Camp Nou and spent the second half of the 2019-20 season on loan at Bundesliga side Schalke.
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What Next For Todibo?
Todibo’s loan move to Schalke included an option for the German team to sign the youngster for €25 million, plus €5m in add-ons. However, the club passed up the chance to land him on a permanent deal.
The defender is now back at Barcelona but could be sold in the summer transfer window to raise funds. Premier League side Watford have been linked with a move, while Everton, Newcastle, Wolves and Benfica are also reportedly interested.
Barca stand to make quite a profit on the youngster if he is sold. They only spent €2 million to bring him in but are hopeful of selling for around €25m, according to Sport’s Lluís Miguelsanz.
Araujo Ahead of Todibo in Pecking Order
Todibo is popular with many Barcelona supporters who feel he has the potential to become a top defender. He hasn’t had many chances to impress but put in a good showing against Inter in the Champions League this season.
Yet he appears to have fallen behind Barcelona B youngster Ronald Araujo in the pecking order at the Camp Nou which is why he could depart this summer.
Araujo had made five appearances for the first team this season, and it would be no surprise if he was promoted to the senior squad in time for the 2020-21 campaign.