Reported Liverpool and Tottenham target Cristian Tello says he is staying at Barcelona until the summer at the very least.
• Ledwith: Messi brilliance tempered by Neymar injury
Tello, 22, is already a Spain international, but has barely featured under Barca coach Gerardo Martino this season.
Injury has played its part in restricting the winger’s progress, while in December he spoke publicly about possibly looking to get more first-team football elsewhere.
This has led to serious speculation that a Premier League club such as Liverpool or Tottenham could be willing to take Tello -- either on loan for the remainder of the season, or offer up to 20 million euros to sign him permanently.
But after completing a rare 90 minutes in Barca’s 2-0 Copa del Rey last-16 second-leg win at Getafe on Thursday evening, and setting up Lionel Messi’s opening goal, the youngster told AS that he was happy now and had not given up on making a proper breakthrough at the Catalan club.
“Definitively I am staying until June at Barcelona, then in the summer we will see,” Tello said. “I am happy here. I’m not playing as much as I did last year, but I’m not giving up. The most important thing is to play, get time on the pitch and work hard. You always have to give the best of yourself and take advantage of your opportunities.”
Tello started Thursday’s game on the right wing then switched to the left when Alexis Sanchez replaced Neymar, after the Brazil international picked up an ankle injury.
“I feel good playing on the right,” he said. “The important thing is to get minutes. After that, with Neymar’s injury, I went to the left side -- I feel good on either side of the pitch.”