Abidal 'still attached' to Barcelona

The Frenchman, who left Camp Nou this summer, has revealed that he is still in regular contact with his former team-mates and says he could never speak ill of the club
Former Barcelona defender Eric Abidal says he still holds the club in his heart following his Camp Nou exit this summer.

The Frenchman, who spent much of the latter years of his career in Spain battling cancer, was not offered a new deal at the end of the season.

He subsequently rejoined Monaco but has revealed that he is still in regular contact with people at the club.

"We worked together for six years. [On Tuesday] I sent messages to my colleagues to wish them good luck with the match [against Atletico Madrid]," he told RMC.

"I support the people I love and I call them. I'm still very attached to Barcelona. But I don't regret leaving the club.

I'm very happy at Monaco. I can't say anything negative about Barcelona. I was expecting a new contract but it never arrived. It wasn't an easy choice for Barca."

Dani Alves has taken on Abidal's No.22 shirt this season and Abidal went on to hail his former team-mate for the gesture.

"What Dani did is enormous," he continued. "He's an important person in football. He left messages on social media, he paid tribute to me. I hope he wears the No.22 for a long time. He's a fantastic man."