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Agent denies injured Barcelona star Dembele flew to Senegal after Athletic loss

19:18 GMT+3 20/08/2019
Ousmane Dembele Barcelona 2019-20
There were reports the French attacker slept on a sofa at the airport to make his flight to Africa after the game in Bilbao

Ousmane Dembele's agent has denied reports that his client flew to Senegal after Barcelona's 1-0 loss to Athletic on Friday. 

The 22-year-old played the full match at the San Mames as his side lost their opening La Liga fixture thanks to a stunning 89th-minute winner from Aritz Aduriz.

Following the match, Dembele reportedly jetted off to Senegal, spending the night on a couch at the Bilbao airport to make sure he didn't miss his flight. 

Upon his return, Dembele was diagnosed with a hamstring strain that will see the French attacker miss approximately five weeks.

Barcelona were understood to be upset about the series of events that led to Dembele's injury, believing that sleeping on a couch exacerbated the problem. 

The Blaugrana were also reportedly upset that Dembele did not fully inform the team's medical staff about any discomfort following Friday's game in Bilbao. 

However, Dembele's agent Moussa Sissoko has denied that his client flew to Africa after Friday's match, instead saying that he travelled to visit his mother in France

"It's not true, he didn't travel to Senegal. He was in Rennes in his mother's house. I assure you 100%," Sissoko told Mundo Deportivo.

Dembele returned to Barcelona training on Monday, where he felt more discomfort in his hamstring, eventually leading to the diagnosis that will keep the winger sidelined for at least a month. 

The player's agent also denied that his client hid the full extent of his injury from the team's medical staff after the match against Athletic. 

"After the game, he thought they were cramps," Sissoko said about the pain Dembele felt. 

In any case, Dembele's injury adds to a growing list of concerns for Barcelona in the season's early stages. 

Lionel Messi missed the game against Athletic as he recovers from a calf injury, while Luis Suarez is out for an indefinite period of time after coming down with a calf problem of his own in the match. 

The injuries leave Barcelona short in attack after Philippe Coutinho confirmed his move to Bayern Munich on Monday, joining the Bundesliga champions on a one-year loan deal with a €120 million (£110m/$133m) option to buy at the end of the season.