The struggling Barcelona forward Ousmane Dembele must follow the example of his more experienced club colleagues to return to the team, striker Luis Suarez said on Monday. Dembele came out of the squad for Barca's 4-3 defeat by Real Betis last Sunday after failing to appear for training three days earlier and, according to Spanish media reports, failed to inform the club of its existence for 90 minutes.
The 21-year-old France international has struggled to fully adapt at Barca since the signing of Borussia Dortmund in August 2017 for a club record fee of 105 million euros ($ 119.01 million) with the intention to fill the void left by Neymar. His playing time has been limited by a series of hamstring injuries and he has also broken club discipline rules, including being late for a team meeting before the Champions League match at home to Inter Milan in October and no one recently. -show for training.
Speaking before Uruguay's international friendly with France in Paris on Tuesday, Suarez said Dembele did not have a bad relationship with fellow Barca players but he challenged his teammate to bow his head and concentrate more.
"Maybe he needs to be more focused and a little more responsible in some areas. He is very young and he can see more experienced players surrounding him, "Suarez said. "But he is still worthy of being on the team. It's not that he doesn't adapt to the dressing room. His relationship with his teammates was good, he was happy, but some of us had told him and he knew that it was a privilege to be where we were. "
Last week, Barca defender Gerard Pique said he and other senior club players needed "to help Dembele understand that football is a 24-hour job and he must live accordingly".