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We can now say that João Félix and João Cancelo are officially FC Barcelona players. On Friday evening, just before the closure of the transfer market, the Club announced that agreements had been reached with Atlético Madrid and Manchester City for the two Portuguese internationals to join the blaugranes on loan until the end of the season. On Saturday morning at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper the two Joãos put pen to paper and were presented as first team squad members.
"I have worked hard to make my dream possible"
The first to appear was João Félix, wearing the Barça kit and a smile from ear to ear, accompanied by FC Barcelona president Joan Laporta, first vice president Rafa Yuste and by the Club's sporting director, Anderson Luis de Souza 'Deco'.
"Everyone knows that I am happy to be here, it is a dream for me. I come to help the team and it is a unique feeling. When they told me that Barça were interested I was very happy. In the end, thanks to everyone's effort it has been possible," said João Félix.
"With my dad and my brother we used to watch the Barça and we have always been fans of this great club. I have had that dream since I was young and I have worked hard to make that goal of coming here happen."
FC Barcelona president Joan Laporta also commented on the arrival of João Félix to the Club. "We are signing a great talent who will be able to express himself in a system which is perfect for him," said the president before adding: "He is one of the players who has shown most commitment and desire to make the move to Barça. He is really motivated and this signing would not have been possible without all the hard work."
Sporting director Deco also highlighted the work put in to make the transfer happen: "We thought it would be impossible, for his standing and the situation we are in. However, right from the start he made an effort and showed that he wanted to come. We will be a better squad and with João Félix we will grow as a team."
"My mother knew where I wanted to play"
Next it was the turn of João Cancelo, also accompanied by FC Barcelona president Joan Laporta, first vice president Rafa Yuste and by the Club's sporting director, Anderson Luis de Souza 'Deco'. The defender posed for photographs in a Barça shirt with the ball at his feet.
"It's a dream come true. I want to thank my family, my agents and my friends. Also my mother, who from up on high watches over me every day. She knows where I wanted to play and it's a dream to be here," said an emotional Cancelo.
"My heroes have always played here. I identify with Barça's style of play and I think we have many similarities." The Portuguese full back admitted he was raring to go with his new club: "I come here really excited, ready to start working hard to win lots of trophies. We know there will be pressure but I like that. The Club lives for silverware and we can hope we can win some this season."
President Laporta appeared delighted with the arrival of the right back. "João Cancelo is an extraordinary talent. A specialist at right back, a position that the coaching staff said needed to be strengthened. He is a versatile player and despite being still young he has plenty of experience and that will help us."
"I want to highlight the commitment he has shown in coming to Barça. It was a transfer that should have been done a while ago but today we have the fortune to unveil him."
Deco also referred to the need to bolster the squad at full back. "We are really happy to have Cancelo here. For me to sign a fellow countryman is exciting. Cancelo will bring us experience and quality in a position that together with the coaching staff we have been looking to reinforce. Now we are a stronger squad," said the former Portuguese international.
To conclude the presentation a group photograph was taken to mark the completion of the Barça squad for the 2023/24 season.
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