10 facts about Junior Firpo - Barcelona's latest signing!
Barcelona have completed the €18 million (£16.3m/$20m) signing of Real Betisdefender Junior Firpo. The left-back has signed a five-year deal with the Spanish champions and will provide competition for Jordi Alba at Camp Nou. Here are 10 facts you need to know about Junior
He is the first player born in the Dominican Republic to join FC Barcelona's first team. In addition, he is also the first footballer born in the Dominican Republic to play in La Liga. The other three Dominicans who passed through the Spanish top flight hadn’t been born in that country.
Despite being born in the Dominican Republic, he is a Spanish international and was proclaimed European champion with the U21 team this summer. With the Dominican team he only played one friendly match for the senior side, against Brazil U23s.
Like many other full-backs, before taking up the position, he started his playing career as a winger.
He arrived in Málaga aged six, and played for different local teams such as Atlético Benamiel, Tiro Pichón and Puerto Malagueño
Four months ago, his first and only daughter was born: Jannet.
His first pay cheque as a footballer saw him invest in getting his driving license.
He has only faced FC Barcelona once, last season at the Camp Nou when Real Betis won 3-4. Firpo provided an assist for Sergio Canales in that game and also scored himself.
He will be the 25th player to have defended the colours of both Real Betis and FC Barcelona. Ramón Maria Calderé, Sánchez Jara, José Manuel Pinto, Sergio García, Damià Abella, Marc Bartra, Martín Montoya and Cristian Tello, among others, are just a few to do so.
Born in 1996, he shares his birth year with another player from Barça’s first team: Arthur.
Junior Firpo is an all-round athlete, having also played basketball and baseball in the Dominican Republic.