Tactical Insights

FC Barcelona Star Announces ‘Emotional’ Departure

A now former FC Barcelona star announced his “emotional” departure from the club via social media.

Barca bought Sergino Dest from Ajax for a fee of $22.7 million (€21 million) fee plus a further $5.4 million (€5 million) in variables in 2020 during the Ronald Koeman era.

He then went on to make a total 72 appearances as a Blaugrana player, 56 of which came as a starter, but was loaned out to AC Milan in 2022/2023.

With no place in the sporting project of Koeman’s successor Xavi Hernandez, another temporary assignment followed at PSV in his and Koeman’s homeland the Netherlands.

PSV turned down a chance to sign Dest for $11.9 million (€11 million) and therefore didn’t trigger an optional purchase clause in his loan deal for 2023/2024.

This was inspired by a May ACL injury Dest suffered, and which CBS Sports reported could keep him on the sideline for nine months while also ruling him out of the ongoing Copa America with the United States’ Men’s National Team (USMNT).

Still, last weekend, the Catalans announced that a deal had been reached for PSV to sign Dest permanently as part of an arrangement where it appears it has acquired him for free while Barca retains any percentage of a future sale.

A few days after that development was made common knowledge, Dest has taken to Instagram to bid farewell to the club.

Sharing a clip of himself joining the Blaugrana and playing for it in the Champions League and La Liga, Dest wrote: “This is an emotional moment for me! An amazing club with such a nice history!”

“I would have liked to see it differently, but sometimes in life things are out of your control.

“I had a great time, especially the first two years, and would like to thank the fans, staff, players and everyone who supported me for these wonderful years.

“May we meet again. Gracias por todo! (thanks for everything!)” Dest signed off.

With Dest gone, Barca will try to make fellow right back Joao Cancelo’s loan deal permanent amid the graduation of Hector Fort from the La Masia academy.

It might encounter some difficulties in this, however, with Cancelo’s parent club Manchester City only interested in selling him while Barca wants another loan with an option to buy according to SPORT.

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