Bayer Leverkusen star Álex Grimaldo explains Barcelona departure

Bayer Leverkusen star Alejandro Grimaldo has this weekend provided an insight into the reasoning behind his departure from La Liga giants Barcelona.

The name of defender Grimaldo has of course taken its place front and centre in the headlines across all of Europe to this point in the campaign.

As much comes with the Spaniard having played an absolutely pivotal role in the historic campaign being enjoyed by Bayer Leverkusen in Germany.

All told, the 28-year-old, from his berth at left wing-back, has racked up a hefty 11 goals, and 16 assists.

Such production has given rise to inevitable speculation surrounding his future, amid alleged interest in Grimaldo’s services on the part of leading clubs in the likes of Spain, England and Italy.

Speaking in an interview with Esquire this weekend, though, the gifted full-back was instead drawn on one of his former clubs.

Grimaldo spent seven of the early years of his career developing at Barcelona, only to depart for Benfica in 2016 without having managed a single La Liga appearance.

Asked for the reasons behind his Camp Nou exit, it therefore came as little surprise when the Leverkusen standout went on to highlight a lack of opportunities in Blaugrana colours:

“It was a forced decision, Barca didn’t count on me. I had six months left on my contract and there was a possibility to renew my deal and move into the first-team.

“After 4 or 5 years at Barca B, I felt it was time to take that leap, but it didn’t happen.

“I understand the club’s position, because at the time Jordi Alba was there and it was difficult to get into the first-team, so I had to make the decision to leave.”

Conor Laird | GSFN

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