Braithwaite tells Barcelona to 'think about people's mental health'
‘Xavi didn’t believe in my abilities’: Martin Braithwaite tells Barcelona to ‘think about other people’s mental health’ after being forced out of the club… and believes that he ‘disproved many critics’ while at the Nou Camp
- Martin Braithwaite had his contract terminated by Barcelona on deadline day
- Barca tried to force the striker out of the club amid their ongoing financial issues
- Braithwaite has hit out at the way he was treated in Catalonia before his exit
- He believes that he proved doubters wrong but that Xavi never trusted him
Martin Braithwaite has hit out at Barcelona for the way he was treated at the club before his departure earlier this month.
The Catalan giants were desperate for the forward to leave in the summer amid their ongoing financial struggles.
Braithwaite had a contract at the Nou Camp until 2024 and rejected Barca’s offer to terminate his deal because he wanted to be paid his remaining two years’ salary in full.
Martin Braithwaite has hit out at Barcelona for the way he was treated before his departure
The 31-year-old was ostracised by Xavi and left out of the matchday squad for the first three LaLiga games of this season, having played just 10 minutes of league football in 2022.
A deal was eventually reached to tear up Braithwaite’s contract and he joined city rivals Espanyol on a three-year contract on deadline day.
Speaking to Danish paper Ekstra Bladet, he took aim at the way his time at the Nou Camp ended.
‘Did I take it as bullying, I actually don’t know,’ Braithwaite said. ‘But I think it’s important that you always think about other people’s mental health.
The ex-Middlesbrough man was a shock signing for Barcelona from Leganes in February 2020
Braithwaite believes he was never trusted by Xavi, who took over as manager last November
‘That’s the way it is. I know how things work in this world. Unfortunately, football is also a business.’
Braithwaite was a shock signing for Barcelona from Leganes in February 2020, particularly as he had been playing for Middlesbrough in the Championship just a year earlier.
But after scoring 10 goals in 58 appearances for Barca, the Danish international believes that he proved his doubters wrong.
He started last season with two goals and an assist in the opening fixture against Real Sociedad but then suffered a knee injury in just the third game of the campaign.
Braithwaite scored twice on the opening day of last season but then suffered a knee injury
A five-month spell on the sidelines meant that Barca had ditched Ronald Koeman for Xavi by the time Braithwaite returned to fitness, and the forward says he was never liked by the Spaniard.
‘In many ways, I can only smile a little at all the things that have taken place behind the scenes. I think I have disproved many critics. I was top scorer last season before I got injured.
‘But then there was a change of coach, he wanted something else, and that is part of football life.
‘Xavi didn’t believe in my abilities, so I had to leave. I had known for a long time that the coach did not believe in me and that I had to move on from Barcelona.’
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