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Ahead of what’s expected to be a crunch match in LaLiga this weekend against Atlético Madrid (Saturday, 4.15pm CEST), young Barça B star, Konrad de la Fuente, attended various US media keen to hear how the 19-year-old has found this atypical 2020/21 campaign.
“I’ve just been focused this season on helping my team, training with the first-team every week, getting ready incase I get an opportunity to play and if not, go and play with the B team and try my best to get better. That’s what it’s been about,” he noted.
“At the beginning of the season I wasn’t playing much with either team because I would travel with the first-team so I’d miss a B team game, then two weeks later I’d play with the B team. So it was pretty difficult to get into a rhythm of games and minutes, but now I’ve been playing regularly for a good 10 or 11 weeks and I feel really good.
“I think this season I’ve been moving a lot better without the ball. I analyse my matches every week and that’s one of the reasons why I feel like I’ve improved.”
With more US players now making their mark in European football, Konrad explained that there was never any other club where he wanted to learn his trade.
“I always knew that La Masia was the best academy in the world and it was always my dream to come here to play as a kid. So when I got here and realised the style of play, I had to adapt to it and I’m really happy here.
“It’s incredible being with the first-team, training with them, learning from the best players in the world, especially Messi. He’s one of my idols and it’s been really great learning from him and all the other players. I’m really thankful because they’ve helped me as well.”
Something of a trailblazer, Konrad is delighted by the opportunities opening up for players from the US, as well as noting that he’s also up for the challenge of becoming a first-team regular at Barça.
“There’s a lot of really good young players coming up in the US right now, as well as those already in Europe, so it’s really good. The more competition, the better you get, so I’m ready for the challenge.”
Media in attendance: Wall Street Journal / CBS Sports / LA Times / NY Times / Univision / Miami Herald / Associated Press / ESPN
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