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'It hurt me a lot' - Riqui Puig hits out at Barcelona for making him train alone before LA Galaxy transfer

15:25 GMT+3 23/08/2022
Puig Barcelona 2021-22
The Spanish midfielder says he was forced to train on his own before leaving Barcelona in July to join MLS outfit the LA Galaxy
  • Puig was left out of Barca pre-season tour
  • Recalls "tough month" training alone
  • Angry over treatment before Galaxy switch

WHAT HAPPENED? Riqui Puig has criticised Barcelona for the treatment he received in his final few months at the club. The 23-year-old spent seven years at Camp Nou but has now left the club for a new adventure in MLS with the LA Galaxy.

WHAT PUIG SAID: Puig told AS: "It was a tough month because I had never seen that before, leaving players behind in Barcelona and going on a tour without them. Perhaps I understand the club’s position, they want to put pressure on players to leave, but there are other ways to do it. It was really difficult being in Barcelona, training alone, with four other team-mates who were also there with me.

“After seven years at the club, being in Barcelona when all my team-mates are in Los Angeles playing matches, well, the truth is that it hurt me a lot. It’s a difficult situation and sometimes you have to make decisions and they have made this decision but I don’t agree with it.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Barcelona are struggling financially and as a result, have let several players go this summer. Philippe Coutinho is among those to have left Camp Nou after a turbulent few years, with the Brazilian joining Aston Villa, while club legend Dani Alves departed on a free transfer.

IN A PHOTO: Puig only started two games last season for Barcelona.

WHAT NEXT FOR PUIG? Puig made his MLS debut as a sub on August 20 in the LA Galaxy's 3-3 draw with Seattle Sounders. He'll be hoping to make his first start when the Galaxy travel to New England Revolution on August 29, with a view to putting himself in contention for Spain's World Cup squad.