Pablo Fornals has joined West Ham United.
West Ham have signed Fornals from Villarreal in the summer transfer window for a fee reported by BBC Sport to be worth £24 million.
The 23-year-old attacking midfielder has arrived at the London Stadium with a strong reputation, and Balague has praised the Spain international.
Balague has admitted his surprise that clubs in the Champions League did not sign the youngster, who he believes is good enough to play for Spanish and European giants Barcelona.
Balague told West Ham’s official website about Fornals: “He has got great knowledge of the game and knows what to do with and without the ball. He is flexible in both the position he can play and also what he can do with the ball, as he can drive forward with the ball, dribble or pick and play a pass with either foot.
“He does not lose possession easily and has the ability to create in the last third of the pitch when it matters. Fornals maybe should score more goals, but he does have an eye for goal and it would not surprise me to see him score more in the future.
“Personally, I always thought he would end up at Barcelona, as he has all the attributes you normally find in a Barcelona player.”
Balague added: “I am surprised other clubs – UEFA Champions League clubs – did not move for him, to be honest, but their loss is West Ham’s gain, for sure.”
Good signing for West Ham United?
Fornals is a very creative midfielder who will make West Ham’s attacking unit much better next season than it was this past campaign.
According to WhoScored, the Spain international attacking midfielder made 28 starts and seven substitute appearances in La Liga for Villarreal this past season, scoring two goals and providing three assists in the process, according to WhoScored.
The attacking midfielder also made 10 starts and two substitute appearances in the Europa League for the Yellow Submarine in 2018-19, scoring three goals and providing three assists in the process, according to WhoScored.