The Frenchman is hitting perhaps his best form since joining Barcelona from Borussia Dortmund, exhibiting a spark that he brings to the game when he’s on his game. If he can stay fit, he could be like a new signing for Ronald Koeman.
It’s taken close to three-and-a-half years for Dembele to hit this rhythm, principally due to successive debilitating injuries. Not being fully fit, he’s generally lacked the explosive pace so integral to his game when he has played.
Dembele played with maturity at Athletic Club, impressing with his decision making and retention of the ball, gaining in confidence to a noticeable degree and also working diligently in defence. With Ansu Fati out injured for a while yet, his moment to shine at Camp Nou may have arrived.
Dembele offers Barcelona a one-on-one ability that nobody else in the squad possesses, and he’ll be helped by the flourishing partnership between the more central Messi and Pedri. Next up, Granada, could tell a lot.