Gavi insists priority was always new Barcelona contract

Gavi says he always planned to stay with Barcelona after his new contract signing presentation on Thursday.

After months of negotiations and tense waiting, Gavi sealed his commitment until 2026 and with a 1 billion euros release clause.

The player arrived with his family mid-afternoon on Wednesday at the club’s offices where he met with president Joan Laporta and other directors and executives.

He then went to the Camp Nou where the actual renewal ceremony took place in front of some 4,000 people in the stands.

“Today is a historic day. I want to thank Gavi for his renewal,” Laporta said.

“When he was little there were people who said ‘he fights for every ball’.

“It’s a very happy day for Barcelona, for Gavi and for all the Barcelona fans.

“Thanks to those who have worked at the club to make this renewal a reality. It is a very emotional and historic day for Barcelona because we are signing the present, immediate present and future [of the club].

“We have achieved it. Long live Barcelona and long live Gavi.”

Laporta especially wanted to thank Ivan de la Pena, the player’s agent, for encouraging Gavi to go to Barcelona when he was at Real Betis and had other offers.

Then it was Gavi’s turn to speak, but he did not say too much. He emphasised the happiness of the moment.

“I am very happy about the renewal,” Gavi said. “It’s a dream I’ve had since I was a child, it’s always been clear to me that I wanted to be here.

“[La Masia] is something unique and I’m grateful to the cooks, tutors, everyone…

“They have taught me to work and to be humble. That’s why I take it well, naturally.”

Barcelona face Elche this Saturday, a team that brings back very good memories for Gavi as he scored his first goal against them.

“I have very good memories of that day and of being able to celebrate my first goal in the best club in the world,” he said.