Tottenham Hotspur new boy Emerson Royal is not happy with former club Barcelona after claiming he didn’t have a choice about his transfer.
Emerson was Tottenham’s last signing of a busy summer, in which they also acquired the likes of Cristian Romero, Pierluigi Gollini and Bryan Gil. The right-back arrived to replace Serge Aurier, whose contract was terminated by mutual consent.
It was something of a surprise for Emerson, who only made his first Barcelona start two days earlier. They originally worked together with Real Betis to bring him to Spain in 2019, before buying out his contract this summer.
The 22-year-old had made 79 appearances over two-and-a-half years with Betis, prompting Barcelona to make him their own for good. But amid their desperate financial situation, it did not last long.
Emerson played in all three of their opening La Liga games – twice as a substitute and once as a starter – before he was sacrificed on deadline day.
While he is happy to have joined Spurs, Emerson was disappointed with the way Barcelona treated him.
He told Marca: “The ways of Barca hurt me. They could have been otherwise. There were better ways to fix things.
“They were telling me that I had to go, yes or yes.
“When I arrived I was sure that Barcelona did not want to sell me. But seeing what (happened) in the past it is clear to me that when they signed me they already had the idea of selling me in mind.
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“I thought the club wanted me to stay.
“I played on Sunday as a starter, the next day I woke up and went to train quietly.
“There I already began to see that a lot of things were coming out; that Tottenham were talking to Barcelona, that they had almost done it… I didn’t understand anything about what was happening because I didn’t know anything.
“In the afternoon the club called me to go to the Ciudad Deportiva because they wanted to talk to me and there I already found out that they wanted to sell me.
“I met the leaders of the club. They began to tell me that the club’s situation was not good, that it was going through a difficult time and that it was better for them to sell.
“I repeated to them that my intention was to stay. Because I had the illusion of playing here and contributing things to Barcelona.
“I knew that if I was in my best shape I was going to succeed here.
“I am smart and there came a time when I realised that they were telling me to go yes or yes. They were kicking me out with very good words.”
Report reveals how Tottenham convinced Emerson
Emerson will have to quickly put that setback behind him if he is to succeed with Spurs.
Right-back has been a problematic position for the north London outfit in recent years. As well as Aurier’s inconsistency, Matt Doherty has struggled to recapture the form he showed with Wolves before his move last summer.
The appointment of ex-Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo may help Doherty over time. But overall, Emerson is likely to be the more frequent starter.
A recent report revealed the factors that persuaded him to make the move, despite clearly harbouring hopes of making it with Barcelona.
According to The Athletic, Lucas Moura helped motivate him to make the move.
Emerson’s fellow Brazilian supposedly spoke highly of Spurs and their early progress under Nuno.
Meanwhile, Emerson also felt impressed after discussions with Tottenham managing director Fabio Paratici.
He also spoke to Nuno, who was the third figure to help get the deal over the line.