Gerard Deulofeu has said that he is not planning to return to boyhood club ​Barcelona again, and that he is content at ​Watford.

The 24-year-old spoke of the difficulties he faced during his Blaugrana career, being labelled the ‘new ​Messi’ as a youngster.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Watford FC - Premier League

Speaking to The Offside Rule Podcast, Deulofeu said: “I said I will not go back to Barcelona again, no. It’s too hard. I have been back twice, so I don’t want to go back again. I had been there since I was nine years old and sometimes you don’t feel hope, that’s why I don’t want to go back.”

Born in Girona, a province of Catalonia, Deulofeu joined Barcelona’s famous La Masia academy as a youngster, playing for the youth sides right up to the first team.

UEFA Champions League 2017-18 - FC Barcelona vs Olympiacos FC

Speaking of his time there, he said: “It was difficult, because when I was young it was terrible; every day in the media you are the ‘new Messi’ and that’s not good for a young player.

“I didn’t take the chance of Barcelona because playing there is so difficult and sometimes I didn’t have the confidence.”

Despite being just 24, Deulofeu has had a whirlwind career. During his first spell at Barcelona, he was loaned out to ​Everton and Sevilla. After signing permanently for Everton in 2015, he spent a season and a half at Goodison Park before being loaned to ​Milan in 2017.


Barcelona then bought him back to the Camp Nou later that year, before being loaned to Watford this January and bought permanently in the summer.

“Now I’m thinking I can play my best football in the Premier League and Watford put a lot of confidence in me. I’m at Watford now and I’m young and I want to show my best football.”

Deulofeu made his season debut in Watford’s 4-0 defeat to Bournemouth last month, after being sidelined for five weeks. He registered his first goal of the season last Saturday, scoring in the Hornets’ 3-0 win over Huddersfield.

Watford FC v Huddersfield Town - Premier League

Watford sit seventh in the Premier League, after a fantastic start to the season under Javi Gracia. The Hornets are at St. James’ Park next, as they take on ​Newcastle on Saturday afternoon.