Barcelona’s Fernandes left speechless by chance to play with Messi

The Brazilian midfielder is confident he will “mark an era” at Camp Nou and is relishing the prospect of teaming up with a six-time Ballon d’Or winner

Having the chance to play with Lionel Messi at Barcelona leaves Matheus Fernandes at a loss for words, but he is confident of making history with the club.

Barca agreed a deal to sign Fernandes from Palmeiras for an initial fee of €7 million in January, but with that transfer not going through until July, he joined Real Valladolid on loan for the rest of the 2019-20 campaign.

However, the midfielder was unable to make his debut before the coronavirus pandemic brought the season grinding to a halt in March.

Despite being unsure what his short-term future holds, Fernandes is confident he will enjoy a successful career at Camp Nou.

Asked about the prospect of playing alongside Messi, Fernandes told Mundo Deportivo: “I can’t explain it. To think that soon I will be playing with the best player in the world, I don’t even know what to say.

“It is a dream to get to that great club and have the opportunity to be part of it.

“My goal is to play for Barcelona. My contract [with Valladolid] ends in June and I want to be in Barcelona, it is every child’s dream.

“If I can’t go to Barcelona now, I will continue learning at Valladolid or at another club where they value me. I am happy to be here and playing in LaLiga.

“I think I’m going to succeed at Barca. I have the potential for it. I think I fit in with the style of play.

“I hope I can be there and stay there forever and make history at Barcelona.”

The 21-year-old added: “I am very happy because the club showed interest in me. I have great qualities, but I am going to evolve much more there.

“I hope to be there for a long time and I hope to win many titles and bring much happiness to the club and the fans. If the club is happy, I will be.”

Fernandes highlighted Sergio Busquets and Xavi as his main role models and hopes to prove as important to Barca as they have been.

“I am a box-to-box midfielder, but I also like to play in a holding role protecting the defence. I am a technical player,” he said.

“I know I still have a lot to learn, I am aware of it and I am trying to improve here at Valladolid, but I think I am going to mark an era at Barcelona.

“I need to finish better, play quicker. I think I am a good marker, I have good positioning, a good pass and the most important thing is will and I have the will to improve and do my best for Barcelona.

“I like Sergio Busquets’ way of playing a lot and I always noticed him, Xavi too. I’m going to try to do my best to be able to get closer to the level of these great players, knowing that I still have a lot to learn.”