La Liga giants Barcelona made an offer for Pape Matar Sarr before Tottenham Hotspur brought the Senegal international to the Premier League, Generation Foot academy president Mady Toure tells TFM via Wiw Sport. 

For every Gavi, for every Xavi, for every Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and Carles Puyol, there are countless more who failed to make the grade at arguably European football’s most iconic academy. 

Sarr signed a five-year deal with FC Metz in 2020, but only after Toure had rejected an approach from Barcelona. The then-teenage midfielder, Toure felt, needed a club capable of offering a clear pathway into the first team. And competition for places was obviously a lot more sparse at Metz than it would have been in Catalonia. 

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Barcelona wanted Pape Matar Sarr before he joined Tottenham

“When (Barcelona) contacted us for Pape Matar Sarr, there was an offer of 5 billion francs (around £5 million). But I did not look at this sum. I refused. I said to myself that the development of the player must be respected,” says Toure, president of the Generation Foot academy where Sarr made his name. 

“He eventually went to FC Metz. You have to have a roadmap for your young people, who have to do it step by step. It is important.” 

Sarr blossomed across the Channel in France; earning comparisons with former Juventus, Barcelona and Roma ace Miralem Pjanic before sealing an eventual £15 million move to North London during the summer of 2021. After a sluggish start, Sarr has found minutes a little easier to come by under Antonio Conte of late; he and the increasingly-excellent Oliver Skipp benefitting from Rodrigo Bentancur’s season-ending injury. 

“He’s got fantastic quality,” Tottenham talisman Harry Kane tells the Evening Standard of a man he came up against in the knockout stages of the Qatar World Cup.  

“He’s a player who has all the ability and he’ll only get better from experience. We’re happy with him. The boss (Conte) trusts him. That’s why he’s playing.” 

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