Spain Under-21 boss Luis de la Fuente has confirmed rising Barcelona star Ansu Fati has not yet been nationalised to represent Spain.
Fati – born in Guinea Bissau – scored and assisted on his first start for the Blaugrana in their 5-2 win over Valencia earlier this month and his level of performance has generated a great level of excitement.
Officials in the Spanish FA have confirmed they are seeking to nationalise the forward – who is also eligible to play for Portugal – and there had been suggestions he could earn his first call up this week.
The initial idea was for Fati to represent Spain in the upcoming Under-17 World Cup later this month but this idea now appears to have been shelved, as it would not be a sufficiently high standard for him.
The 16-year-old was not selected in either Spain’s Under-21 side or senior squad for their matches this month – although first-team boss Robert Moreno confirmed he was on a preliminary list.
“Ansu Fati is not with us in this selection because at the moment he is not available for us,” De la Fuente told his press conference upon confirming his squad.
“Once he becomes available then this is an option that will interest us, but because of the legal documentation not being sorted, he is not ready.
“We would have gone through the sufficient steps if we could have done.”