According to Mbuyamba, he was close to joining Chelsea but the transfer ban on the club stopped the move from happening. He then went on to join Spanish club Barcelona.

Chelsea lost out to Barcelona in the pursuit of Dutch youngster Xavier Mbuyamba last summer due to the transfer ban imposed on the club by FIFA.

Mbuyamba went on trial with Chelsea prior to the start of the season and quickly made an impression. He started his week training with the Blues’ Under-18s and was swiftly moved up to the Under-23s but the transfer ban then stopped the Blues from signing the Dutch player.

Speaking to VTBL, Mbuyamba said: “I would [have] actually gone to Chelsea, because they were the first to come. But because of a transfer ban they could not contract me. Then the choice finally fell on FC Barcelona.

“I quickly get up to a higher level. At Chelsea I started the week at the under 18 and at the end of the week I trained under 23. The higher the level, the better I got.”

Mbuyamba has impressed since joining Barcelona. He has established himself in Barcelona’s Under-19 side and has also trained with the first team this season.