Memphis Depay has spoken out and made his future intentions clear amid speculation he could leave Barcelona in the summer after just one season at the Camp Nou.
The Dutchman was on target in Barcelona’s 2-1 win over Real Mallorca last time out and told ESPN after the game he wants to stay and fight for his place, as reported by Mundo Deportivo.
“I came here wanting to play for the team. I want to be important for the team next year and several more years,” he said. “It’s normal that I have a lot of competition at Barçelona. I play for the best club in the world.”
Memphis’s goal against Real Mallorca takes him to 12 for the season and means he is the team’s top scorer so far in 2021-22, moving past January signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
The Dutchman has struggled for game time in the second half of the season because of injuries and the arrival in January of attackers such as Aubameyang, Ferran Torres, and Adama Traore.
As such there has been speculation Barcelona could look to sell, particularly because Memphis is out of contract in 2023 and could leave on a free transfer if he does stay next season.
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Xavi Praises Memphis Depay
Barcelona coach Xavi was full of praise for Memphis after seeing his team return to second place in the table by beating Real Mallorca. The boss did not want to speak about the player’s future but made it clear the forward had deserved his place in the team, as reported by AS.
“I’m not talking about the future, I’m talking about the present and the matches to come. And Memphis has played because he trains very well. And maybe another player would have given up,” he said. “We want players with his attitude. I’m happy for him. But if he trains like this, he has to participate.”
Memphis started ahead of Ousmane Dembele who missed training on Saturday because he was suffering with tonsillitis. The Dutchman will now be hoping he has done enough to keep his place in the team for the trip to Real Betis on Saturday, May 7.
Memphis Urges Barcelona To Finish Strongly
Barcelona can guarantee qualification for the Champions League on Saturday against Real Betis and Memphis has called on his team to finish the season strongly ahead of their final four matches.
“We know what we need to do. We want to finish second. Obviously disappointed that we can’t win the league but we know this is a tough season, a new project, young players, not the easiest season we have experienced but we want to end well,” he told Barca TV. “It was important to win after a couple of defeats and also not good football. Sticking together that’s really important. We have to motivate each other, be positive, we know it’s hard, and get our confidence back.
Barcelona’s win has moved the team two points above Sevilla and five clear of Atletico Madrid in the league table. Copa del Rey winners Real Betis are still in the the hunt for a top four spot and sit in fifth, nine points behind Barca.