Barcelona Ripped for 'Arrogance' in Jean-Clair Todibo Signing by Toulouse Chief

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJanuary 9, 2019

Toulouse's French defender Jean-Clair Todibo (C) celebrates after scoring a goal  during the French L1 football match Rennes vs Toulouse, on September 30, 2018 at the Roazhon Park stadium in Rennes, western France. (Photo by LOIC VENANCE / AFP)        (Photo credit should read LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images)
LOIC VENANCE/Getty Images

Toulouse president Olivier Sadran has slammed Barcelona for "arrogance" and accused them of not acting "like a big club" after they confirmed they have reached a deal to sign 19-year-old Jean-Clair Todibo.

The teenager's contract with Toulouse expires in June, and Barcelona announced on Tuesday that he will then move to the Camp Nou on a free transfer. 

The news has not gone down well with Sadran, who criticised Barca's conduct in their pursuit of the centre-back, per L'Equipe (h/t Ian Holyman of ESPN FC):

"They haven't behaved like a big club. And also, it's extraordinary: they declare the player will be with them in July, but I don't know anyone who knows what will happen in six months.

"Life can spring surprises on you, even the most uncomfortable ones. It shows their arrogance, it's to insult life to say what we will do. From a big club, it's not very gracious, even if, legally, they had the right to do it. We also have some of the responsibility.

"For me, football is an ecosystem where each club plays its role. There are big clubs, clubs that bring through youngsters ... From my point of view, the player has been badly advised in the sense he has 10 Ligue 1 matches under his belt. Barca also haven't lived up to what they should be."

Todibo is a France U20 international who has impressed hugely in just a handful of senior games for Toulouse:

He joined the French club's youth academy in 2016 and made his Ligue 1 debut at the start of 2018-19, starting 10 of their opening 12 games of the season in the French top flight.

But Todibo has not played for the club since November due to a contract dispute that has now resulted in his agreeing to join Barca:

Born in Cayenne, French Guiana, Todibo netted his first senior goal for Toulouse in September when he scored a late equaliser against Rennes.

The very fact Barca have agreed to sign him is an indication of his talent, and it is no surprise that Toulouse are upset at having to let him go.

Clearly Sadran does not believe the Catalan giants went about their approach in the right way. 

Todibo will join fellow Frenchmen Ousmane Dembele, Samuel Umtiti and Clement Lenglet at Barca, and the Blaugrana will likely hope he can be a long-term replacement for Gerard Pique in the centre of defence. 

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