Oriol Romeu: Did you know?

Oriol Romeu: Did you know?

The midfielder is coming home after 12 years of European experience with the likes of Koeman, Lampard, Drogba, Van Dijk, Sané and Rüdiger

Oriol Romeu is the latest addition to the FC Barcelona squad. The midfielder is back after leaving his boyhood club 12 years ago. Here's the lowdown in the form of ten things you'll need to know about the new recruit to the blaugrana cause.


1) Oriol Romeu was born in the Catalan town of Ulldecona on 24 September 1991. He hasn't worn the blaugrana strip since appearing for Barça B against Rayo in June 2011, when Luis Enrique was in charge of the reserves. A few weeks earlier he had featured for the first team in a game with Deportivo, one of just two occasions when Pep Guardiola made use of his services.

2) He has since spent nine years in the Premier League (two at Chelsea and seven with Southampton), two in La Liga (one year at each of Valencia and Girona) and one in the Bundesliga (Stuttgart).


3) Romeu is used to working under different managers. At Chelsea, he started under Villas-Boas and left under Rafael Benítez, winning the Champions League in the time in between under Roberto di Matteo. He also experienced managerial changes while on loan to Valencia and also Stuttgart.

4) His first season of regular top flight football was at Southampton in 2015/16, where he was coached by Barça legend Ronald Koeman. At the Saints he also underwent a change of manager, with Claude Puel taking over from the Dutchman.

5) He was a first choice player at Southampton for seven years, playing the 11th highest number of games for the club on the south coast of England. He ranked 6th in the Premiership for recoveries in that time (2015-22). Maybe it's no coincidence that the year after Romeu left, Southampton finished bottom of the league and dropped into the Championship.

6) Stars with whom he has shared a dressing room include his Chelsea colleagues Fernando Torres, Cech, Terry, Lampard and Drogba, while at Southampton he played alongside Van Dijk, Sané, Ings and Walcott. At Valencia he coincided with Mathieu, Keita, Alcácer, Parejo and Canales, and at Stuttgart there was a very young Antonio Rüdiger, now of Real Madrid.

7) In his sole season at Girona, only Santiago Bueno played more games than he did. He led the team for recoveries and had an impressive 87.28% pass completion rate.

8) Romeu is the latest of many players to return to Barça, other examples including Stoichkov, Gerard López, Gerard Piqué, Cesc Fàbregas, Jordi Alba, and more recently Eric Garcia, Dani Alves, Adama Traoré and Héctor Bellerín.

9) He is the third player in the current squad to have a past at Chelsea, the others being Marcos Alonso and Andreas Christensen. Other players who have represented both clubs are Mark Hughes, Albert Ferrer, Winston Bogarde, Boudewijn Zenden, Emmanuel Petit, Ricardo Quaresma, Juliano Belletti, Deco, Samuel Eto’o, Eidur Gudjohnsen, Pedrito, Cesc Fàbregas, Marc Cucurella and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

10) Romeu played for Spain at U17, U19, U20, U21 and U23 level, and featured at the London 2012 Olympics in the same squad as new team-mate Iñigo Martínez. That side also featured Jordi Alba, Cristian Tello, Martín Montoya and Alberto Botía. Romeu also won the U17 European Championship in Turkey, 2008.


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