Frenkie de Jong had a bad feeling on Friday night after his official debut for FC Barcelona. The Catalans started the new season in La Liga with a 1-0 loss at Athletic de Bilbao.
"This was a bad day. We didn't play well and start the competition with a defeat, so we are all very disappointed," De Jong, who ended up in the field for the entire game, said to Ziggo Sport afterwards.
The Oranje-international, who came over from Ajax, failed to make his mark in his first official match. Barcelona played a poor game anyway and took the 1-0 after a great goal from Aritz Aduriz.
"Athletic put high pressure with great intensity," saw 22-year-old De Jong, who formed a midfield in Bilbao with Sergi Roberto and Carles Alena and therefore kept Sergio Busquets and Ivan Rakitic on the bench, among others.
"Normally we have enough quality to get away with it, but at least we didn't do it well enough this time. We didn't find the solution, were sloppy and made many wrong choices. Then you come in the game of Athletic and then you play against a team that is just really good at home. "
The disappointment was great at Frenkie de Jong and Barcelona. (Photo: Getty Images)
"Guys really took good care of me"
De Jong was already kicking off at Barcelona a week ago in a friendly match against Napoli and then played a creditable game. The former youth player of Willem II was therefore not surprised that he could also start against Athletic.
"Whether it is a surprise that I was in the base? I don't know, that may be more true for the people from outside. We also started this team against Napoli, even though we played a lot better then."
Despite that false start, De Jong looks back with a good feeling on his first weeks at Barcelona, which paid at least 75 million euros to let him loose at Ajax. The nine-time international felt welcome from the first moment.
"I was really well taken care of by the boys and included directly in the team. They involve me in everything, send me to nice restaurants and things like that. The style of football is also a bit the same as at Ajax, although there are some differences The first weeks went really well, but it was bad against Athletic. "