Barcelona defender snubs Robert Lewandowski, names young winger as the most difficult to defend against in training

Alejandro Balde speaks up about the toughest to defend in training.
Alejandro Balde speaks up about the toughest to defend in training.

Speaking about the toughest player he has had to face in training, Barcelona defender Alejandro Balde surprisingly didn't pick star striker Robert Lewandowski, instead naming Ousmane Dembele as the hardest player to defend.

Since signing from Bayern Munich, Lewandowski has carried over his supreme form from the Bundesliga to La Liga. He has scored 18 goals and set up four more in just 19 appearances for Barcelona this season.

In an interview with SER Catalunya, he spoke on a variety of topics, including his contract renewal. He said:

"My renewal is in the hands of my agent. My intention is to continue but what may happen I do not know. The renewal is going well but what happens in the future I do not know and it is in the hands of my agent."
@SERCatalunya 🎙️| Balde on most difficult player to defend.🗣️:"The player who's the most difficult to defend I will say Dembélé in training."

After breaking into Barcelona's first team this year, Balde has made himself the first-choice left-back, beating veteran Jordi Alba and new signing Marcos Alonso to that spot. Technically skilled, he poses a strong threat going forward and has picked up three assists in just 12 La Liga appearances.

That said, the 19-year-old believes that the defensive aspect of his game still needs improvement.

"I still have a lot to improve, I'm very young. I have to improve the defensive aspect, I've improved a lot, but I have to do more," he expressed.

With the Blaugrana set to face local rivals Espanyol in the league, Balde said:

"A derby is always special, when we were kids it was the game of the year."

La Liga blocked Barcelona's contract offer for star midfielder: Reports

Sergio Busquets had an agreement to stay until 2025 but the deal was blocked.
Sergio Busquets had an agreement to stay until 2025 but the deal was blocked.

Barcelona offered a contract extension to veteran midfielder Sergio Busquets that would have kept him at the club until 2025. While the player accepted it, La Liga reportedly blocked the deal, according to sources.

Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo reported that the Catalan giants had agreed on a deal with the midfielder that would also hand out all deferred payments during the period of the contract. However, the deal was struck down by La Liga.

La Liga, who are notoriously stringent in their application of financial rules and regulations, were said to be unhappy with a clause in the contract that would have allowed the player to leave the club whenever he wanted and join an 'inferior' league like the MLS.

In August, Barcelona had agreed a two year contract extension with Busquets until 2025. However, La Liga did not accept the contract because it had a clause stating that he could leave to an inferior league like the MLS whenever he wanted.— @mundodeportivo

Latest reports state that Busquets is unwilling to sign an extension and is looking to leave when his contract expires in June 2023 to play in the USA.

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Edited by Anirudh
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