Barcelona has confirmed that their players will wear jerseys with Chinese characters when they play in first-leg of the semi-final of the Copa del Rey against Real Madrid.
The defending cup champion has announced to celebrate the Chinese New Year. This is the first time that Barcelona’s shirts have new characters on the back. A statement from Barcelona confirmed that the move is part of the club’s ambition to build a growing presence in the Asian market.
“This action is added to the video of the Chinese New Year congratulatory video released by the club on Monday with the participation of the first team players Leo Messi, Gerard Pique and Marc-Andre ter Stegen.” said the statement.
“This year is also an important year for the strategy of an establishment of Barca in China, which will see its key moment next summer when the first team visits China and Japan on their pre-season tour.”
Barca wants to win the Copa del Rey for the fifth time in a row, but has to prevail against the arch-rivals Madrid, if they want to reach the final again.
Lionel Messi was included in the 19-man squad of Ernesto Valverde, although the Barca captain suffered a thigh injury over the weekend. But Dembele is still out due to injury.