'A complete disaster' - Valdes reveals having to buy Barca teen Fati new boots

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The current Catalans youth coach played an unusually crucial role in this 16-year-old's development

Barcelona youth coach Victor Valdes has revealed he had to help Anssumane Fati buy new boots after discovering just how poor the teenager's pair were.

Fati, 16, made headlines on Sunday night after becoming the youngest Barca debutant since 1941 when he was brought on in a 5-2 win over Real Betis.

Valdes has overseen attacker's development closely over the past month and discussed how his biggest role could well have been his investigation into Fati's boots at a tournament in Russia

"I told him to bring me his boots and they were a complete disaster, they were causing him pain," Valdes said at a press conference on Monday.

"Nobody had thought it could be the boots, but I did. We went to buy some new ones."

Boasting new boots, Fati has quickly worked his way into Ernesto Valverde's first-team and found himself substituted into the action on Sunday.

With both Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez out injured, opportunity presented itself for the teenager and Valdes clearly believes it's just the start for Fati.   

"He's strong, quick and self-confident," he said.

"You have to give this kind of talent freedom so that he flows. I'm so happy for him, he called me this morning and it made me very excited.

"I'm thankful to Valverde for giving him some minutes. His performance didn't surprise me.

"He represents hard work. He has the soul of an elite player and he's a predator in the box."

Barcelona coach Valverde was also left impressed by Fati's performance and admits he's been surprised by the 16-year-old's quality. 

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"He has a lot of self-confidence, goes to space, faces one on one," Valverde said. 

"He is the youngest player I've ever made debut, but as with veterans, we look at performance, he can give us good performance and that's why I gave him a debut.

"Ansu has surprised us because of his qualities, we will see what happens in the future." 

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