Barcelona's Manchester United and Spurs target: I never considered leaving

Manchester United and Tottenham have little chance of securing their man according to reports.

Manchester United desperately tried to sign Barcelona men in the summer, failing in pursuit of Thiago Alcantara and Cesc Fabregas.

As last year went on they saw themselves linked with up and coming prospect Sergi Roberto, who was claimed to be available for a cut-price €6 million.

Roberto is seen as the next big central midfield star to come through the club's La Masia academy, and was the subject of speculation from Tottenham in the summer.

Andre Villas-Boas was said to have visited Barcelona personally in the summer to discuss a potential transfer, but were rebuffed in their attempts to sign the Spanish under-21 international.

Described as the 'next Xavi', Sergi Roberto is edging his way into the first team.

He has made 10 appearances this season, including his first start of the season just a week ago in the 4-0 demolition of Getafe.

Quizzed by the Spanish press about his elevation into the first team ranks, the midfielder is clearly delighted he hung around and suggests he was never tempted elsewhere.

He told Marca: "It was hard to get into the rotations to begin with, but now I'm very happy. I need to keep working hard and make the most of it."

"At no time did I ever consider leaving Barcelona. That was the right decision."

Xavi himself rebuffed suggestions he would be leaving the club to join the MLS yesterday, hinting he will still remain in Sergi Roberto's path for the time being.

Given that the 21-year-old will be given added time to learn from one of the best ever, that isn't necessarily a bad thing for him in the long-term.

image: © jeroen_bennink

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