Ousmane Dembele has ‘sparked deep concern’ at Barcelona through his alleged ‘obsession with computer games’.
Dembele joined Barca in August 2017 for an initial £96.8m, but has struggled to establish himself in Spain since.
Premier League clubs hold a reported interest in the winger, with Barca saying to “ask Liverpool” about Dembele’s future last week.
Arsenal are also thought to be monitoring developments over his future, but the latest reports are a little worrying.
Dembele has struggled with injury since joining from Borussia Dortmund, starting just 26 of a possible 73 games in all competitions.
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But according to AS, there is ‘particular consternation’ at the Nou Camp due to the player’s apparent gaming disorder.
They claim that while Dembele has a history of ‘minor episodes of poor time-keeping or carelessness’, last week saw him miss training because of ‘an evening of video games’.
Dembele reportedly ‘lost track of time’ while playing games with a group of friends, and ‘forgot to set his alarm for the following morning’. He subsequently overslept and missed the session, telling the club that he was suffering from a “sore stomach”. But when Barca sent a doctor to check on him, he ‘had now fully recovered from his alleged illness’.
The ‘repeated nature of such displays of lack of discipline’ has now become a cause for concern at the club, who believe ‘he needs more help keeping his daily routine in check’.
But Barca feel this is a deep-rooted problem. They fear that Dembele suffers from ‘gaming disorder’: an addiction which requires professional treatment.