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Barca were keen on Bravo stay – Fernandez

SoccerNews in La Liga 3 Sep 2016

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Barcelona technical secretary Robert Fernandez insists nobody told Claudio Bravo he would be second choice goalkeeper and says the LaLiga champions were keen to retain his services.

Bravo moved to Manchester City last month citing a desire to play under the stewardship of Pep Guardiola, while the promise of being first choice in the Champions League is thought to have been a factor.

The Chile international was Barca’s regular ‘keeper in LaLiga, with Marc-Andre ter Stegen – who himself had been linked with a switch to City – taking the gloves in Europe.

Fernandez was disappointed to see Bravo depart, but concedes Barca had little option but to agree to a sale.

“Bravo has helped ter Stegen get better,” Fernandez told RAC1. 

“He had an offer and although we fought for him to stay, he wanted to leave and we had to negotiate. He is a player who had two years of his contract left.

“Nobody told Bravo he’d be second choice. We wanted to renew his contract, but he had other projects in mind.

“Barcelona signed [Jasper] Cillessen as a response to that, and because [head coach] Luis Enrique wanted three keepers, a squad choice that for him comes down to personal preference.”

Barcelona boosted their goalkeeping options with the signing of Netherlands international Cillessen, but Fernandez said the club sees Ter Stegen as their long-term first choice.

“Barca always have to sign good players,” Fernandez said. “The goal is a special place and you have to have important goalkeepers.

“Marc is a goalkeeper at a young age and it is logical for him to continue for many years. He is a goalkeeper in an extraordinary condition and he is happy.”

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