Dembele: Hard work starts now for Barcelona winger
Barcelona attacker Ousmane Dembele admits he is still short of his best after making his first appearance at Camp Nou following a four-month injury absence.
The start of Dembele's Barca career has been heavily disrupted by a hamstring injury, but the Catalans march to top spot in LaLiga and Philippe Coutinho's arrival for a fee which outstrips his could help ease the France international back into action.
He successfully completed 100 per cent of his passes in a composed return as Barca beat Levante 3-0 on Sunday to restore their nine-point advantage over Atletico Madrid.
And Dembele has plenty of self-confidence in his ability to improve further.
"I played on Tuesday against Celta, which was a difficult game, and now I had to play at home for the first time after the injury and I was excited," Dembele is quoted by Marca.
"I have a lot of work to do to get up to speed, but I'm calm."
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) January 7, 2018
Dembele's injury was his first major spell on the sidelines, but he explained how he managed to put the time to good use.
"It was harder to maintain concentration and be consistent in order to meet the recovery deadlines," he said.
"I know it is complicated and difficult to play in this team, but I like the philosophy of the club, which I have to learn.
"I have been learning about the dynamic of the group in the time that I was away."