• Barcelona signed Jules Kounde on a five-year deal
  • Kounde has made five appearances for Barcelona
  • He has also made three assists so far

Jules Kounde has revealed how boss Xavi Hernandez convinced him to join FC Barcelona instead of Chelsea this summer.

Kounde was heavily linked with both Barcelona and Chelsea in the 2022 summer window. He had conversations with Catalans boss Xavi and then-Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel before he made his final decision.

Barcelona reached a $55 million deal with Sevilla for Kounde, who moved to Camp Nou on a five-year deal.

Xavi told Kounde that his qualities corresponded to his game plan, which convinced the 23-year-old French defender that Barcelona was the club for him.

"When I talked to Xavi he told me that my qualities correspond to his game plan, starting from the back, playing high, using my qualities of speed and anticipation. He also wants an aggressive team: we are one of the teams that press high," Kounde said in a recent interview.

Kounde became Barcelona's sixth signing of a busy summer that also saw the arrival of Pablo Torre, Franck Kessie, Andreas Christensen, Raphinha and Robert Lewandowski.

"He saw me in this system and I too, I saw myself in this team that I saw make a pretty crazy rise in the table last season. With Sevilla, we were fifteen points ahead of them in the middle of the season. Xavi arrived and I saw the changes he made and what direction he was going in. I liked it," added Kounde.

He added that Xavi gave him a "real confidence, a real knowledge of my game and my qualities."

The former Sevilla center-back also expressed he wants to be a part of the Barcelona side that brings success back to the club after a hard couple of years.

"First, I come to a huge club, which has known good times and which, lately, has had less. I come to a project that I would not call reconstruction because we already have a competitive team, but rather an upturn. I was interested in being part of this new wave, in search of titles, and to put Barça back where it has always been, among the best," added Kounde.

Sergio Oliveira of Portugal battles for possession with Jules Kounde of France
Sergio Oliveira of Portugal battles for possession with Jules Kounde of France Getty Images | Alex Livesey - UEFA/UEFA

Kounde has already made three assists in his five appearances for Barcelona since his arrival at Camp Nou this season.

With 16 points in six games, Barcelona are placed second in the 2022-23 La Liga table, two points behind table-toppers Real Madrid. In the Champions League, after thrashing Czech club Viktoria Plzen 5-1, Barcelona ended up losing 2-0 to Bayern Munich.