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‘BARCA ALMOST SIGNED KARAMOKO’, CLAIMS REPORT

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Barcelona rejected the chance to sign Celtic’s 13-year-old sensation Karamoko Dembele because of fears the move would land them in trouble with FIFA, a Spanish newspaper claims today.
The world giants were poised to make their move last year after convincing the player his future lay away from Scotland.

But they pulled the plug amid thoughts FIFA would hammer them for signing an under-age player.

In 2014, the Catalan side were given a 14-month transfer ban for breaking rules on signing international players under the age of 18. They were also fined £305,000 by the governing body.

According to Sport newspaper, Barca had scouted Dembele at various youth tournaments and were impressed with the youngster.

But they thought it wise not to follow up their initial interest and the tiny tot playmaker remained at the Hoops and made his first appearance as a seven-minute substitute for the Under-20s development team against Hearts at Cappielow last month.

He played for the Scotland Under-16 team this week in the Victory Shield tournament. His international future remains in doubt, though, as he also trained with the England Under-15s and is also eligible for Ivory Coast.
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