Ousmane Dembélé’s improved performance on the pitch are due to the winger finally starting to fully settle into the squad, according to a report from Diario AS. The report says the French winger is happy and comfortable after a difficult first season at Barcelona that was interrupted by injuries.
While sources are quoted as saying Dembélé is still, perhaps, a year away from fully adapting into the team, it’s clear that he is integrating himself more and more into a key player for the culé club.
Last season was very difficult for Dembélé as he tried to adapt to his new team after moving from Borussia Dortmund. Reportedly, he was mentally devastated and it showed on the pitch, and some inside the club wondered whether they had sent over 100 million euros in his transfer fee “into the rubbish bin.”
But, he never lost the confidence of sporting director Robert Fernández or his replacement, Éric Abidal, and despite some rumors that he would leave last summer, he has stuck around long enough to start proving his doubters wrong.
His habits at home, a reported source of anxiety for the club, have improved as he has hired a personal assistant to help him with household tasks and maintaining good nutrition, according to AS. His love for fizzy drinks has been tempered as he attempts to stay in peak condition and avoid any more long injuries.
The report also says that going along with the French national team and winning the World Cup has given him a breath of fresh air, which allowed him to return to Barça in a better mental state. He has gained confidence as he has become a key player for Ernesto Valverde, and reportedly, he is understanding what the coach expects out of him more and more.
While it seems some are keen on not setting expectations too high, it’s clear that Dembélé is enjoying a great spell of form and that does suggest something quite exciting indeed for all culés.