One of the major coups of the Premier League summer transfer window is Brighton’s loan swoop for Barcelona forward Ansu Fati.
Building on last season’s success was always going to be a tall order for the Seagulls, especially after losing some of their key stars during the close season.
With the likes of Alexis Mac Allister and Moises Caicedo moving on and Julio Enciso suffering a long-term injury, doubts regarding Brighton's prospects this term began to circulate,
But Roberto De Zerbi and the board have worked their magic in the transfer market and Fati looks to be their deal of the summer.
Fati was earmarked for big things at a very young age, with football very much running in the family with his dad an ex-professional and his older brother also a footballer.
After starting on the path in the Sevilla youth team, the winger then joined the ‘La Masia’ at Barcelona at the age of just 10.
Fati signed his first professional deal in July 2019, penning a three-year contract with the Catalan giants and going straight into the first-team squad.
The forward had not even played a reserve team match before making his first senior outing – making a substitute appearance in a win over Real Betis in August 2019.
Just six days later, Fati scored his first goal for Barca – bagging in a 2-2 draw at Osasuna at the age of just 16 years and 304 days.
Just under a month later, the Bissau-born star made his first senior start and, in the process, became the youngest player in La Liga history to score and assist in the same match.
Later in September, he also became the youngest player to feature for Barca in the Champions League, as the La Liga giants drew at Borussia Dortmund.
Arguably his most impressive feat was becoming the youngest goalscorer in Champions League history, at the age of 17 years and 40 days, as Barcelona beat Inter Milan 2-1 at the San Siro.
Under Ronald Koeman, Fati went from strength-to-strength at the beginning of the 2020-21 season after becoming an official member of Barca’s first-team squad.
The forward had been amongst the goals and starring at the top level until suffering a torn the meniscus in his left knee in November 2020.
It was thought he would be sidelined for four months, but it turned out that Fati was out of action for nine months as his recovery took longer than expected.
Despite all of his injury issues, Barca announced at the start of the 2021-22 season that Fati would take Lionel Messi’s number 10 shirt.
Later in the campaign, the forward was struck down by a hamstring problem and had to sit out another three months of the season.
Despite making 36 appearances in Barca’s title winning season in 2022-23, he appears to have slipped down the pecking order and the Spanish international will look to get his fitness and career back on track in the Premier League with the Seagulls.
Brighton 2023/24 Outright odds:
To win the Premier League – 66/1
To win the Premier League without Man City – 28/1
Top Four Finish – 4/1
Top Six Finish – 6/5
To Finish in the Top Half – 2/11
To Finish in the Bottom Half – 7/2
Premier League Highest Scoring Team – 16/1
To win the FA Cup – 16/1
To win the League Cup – 10/1