Valencia midfielder Seydou Keita believes his current club have the look of the Sevilla side he joined in 2007.
Keita spent a year at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan before making the switch to Barcelona. He remained in Catalonia until 2012, when he left for Dalian Aerbin.
Returning to La Liga in January, Keita will return to his first club in Spain with Los Che on Sunday and told AS that he sees similarities between Sevilla then and Valencia now.
“There are many similarities. Both have a young team but with great quality in it,” he said.
“The difference is that Sevilla had won the UEFA Cup and the Super Cup.
“I have to give thanks to [former Sevilla President Jose Maria] del Nido and Monchi, who I met and filled me with confidence.
“When I came to Spain nobody knew me. I played a good year and my career took off from there.”
Keita moved to Seville at a difficult time for the club, joining just weeks before the death of Antonio Puerta.
“I’d only been in Seville a few weeks. It was very difficult to recover.
“Puerta was a good and happy person.
“I didn’t speak much of the language but didn’t need it to suffer through that. It was a shame.
“We played all season for him. Sometimes life does things you can’t do anything about.”
AS adds that Keita was signed for €4m [from Lens] and was sold for €14m, leaving a Sevilla team of which Federico Fazio was then a young member.
“He could play for Barcelona,” Keita said of his former colleague.