Vidal not happy with Barcelona role

Barcelona's Arturo Vidal has explained the frustration that led him to post an angry emoji after being left out of the trip to Tottenham.

Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal   -  Getty Images

Arturo Vidal has admitted he was annoyed with his lack of first-team football at Barcelona in the early part of the season.

The midfielder, who joined from Bayern Munich in August for a reported €19million fee, only managed two starts in LaLiga before the end of last month.

It was reported the 31-year-old was becoming frustrated with a lack of action and matters reached a head in October when he posted an angry emoji on Instagram after being left out of the Champions League match with Tottenham at Wembley.

Vidal has conceded he had been angry with his failure to earn a spot in Ernesto Valverde's plans, but he insists the matter is now forgotten.

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"There was a little bit of annoyance, but it's in the past," he said in an interview with RAC1. "A player always wants to play and to be important. You come here to contribute, not to cause problems in such an important team.

"It was a little bit of a heated thing, but it's in the past. I'm only thinking about working, doing things well and winning titles."

Vidal has started all four of Barca's most recent LaLiga matches, but he does not believe he should be considered an automatic starter given the quality in the squad.

"I don't feel like a starter, but this is something that is earned training session to training session and whenever you are called upon to play," he said. "No player can feel like a starter here, as whoever is playing best will be in the line-up.

"I try to do what the coach wants and give what I know from my career. I can steal balls, attack and defend, and give my best.

"Some people get confused and aren't sure what it is I do. There aren't many midfielders who can do what I can, which is to go box to box. This is good for the team."

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Vidal also stressed the rest of the team have not lost patience with Ousmane Dembele amid concerns about the forward's punctuality and commitment to training.

"No," he said simply. "It's clear that he's young and sometimes he has made mistakes, but he is a good guy. He trains to the maximum and gives maximum effort.

"These things are details that will improve with time, they're things that aren't too important. He apologised to the team. It can't be repeated, but of course he apologised for having arrived late. He realised he made a mistake, but it wasn't anything serious that could affect the group."