Sevilla chief speaks out on Man Utd loanee Hannibal Mejbri’s bust-up | Football

The youngster was reprimanded over the weekend by the Spanish club (Picture: Getty)

Sevilla president Jose Maria del Nido Carrasco has defended Manchester United loanee Hannibal Mejbri, rubbishing suggestions of a bust-up with one of his new team-mates.

The 21-year-old moved to the Spanish club on loan until the end of the season with the deal including the option for Sevilla to make the move permanent for an undisclosed fee.

He made his debut off the bench earlier this month in a heavy 5-1 defeat to Girona in La Liga and was then left out of the squad that lost to Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey quarter-final.

Hannibal played no part against Osasuna on Saturday either, with a cryptic statement from manager Quique Sanchez Flores saying the youngster needed time ‘to understand that he is at Sevilla and what that means’.

There were suggestions in the Spanish press that the Tunisian was dropped after an angry bust-up with new team-mate Mariano during a training session, with the confrontation continuing inside the locker room.

Del Nido Carrasco has now addressed the situation and rubbished claims of a clash between Hannibal and Mariano, while he is convinced the youngster will be a huge asset to Sevilla once he has settled into life at the club.

Speaking to Sevilla’s ABC, the club president said: ‘I think things have been blown out of proportion a little. We are very excited about Hannibal.

‘The sports management chose him, he is one of the signings from the January window that excites us the most and we are convinced that Hannibal is going to make it at Sevilla.

Manchester United loanee Hannibal Mejbri at Sevilla

Hannibal with Sevilla sporting director Victor Orta two weeks ago (Picture: Getty)

‘I feel like everything has its processes. He’s only been here a couple of weeks, it’s a new country, a new culture, a new city, a different way of training, a different coaching style.

‘We are super excited about Hannibal and convinced he is going to play a lot and breakthrough here at our club.’

Asked specifically about the rumours regarding a confrontation with Mariano, Del Nido Carrasco added: ‘Hannibal is a magnificent professional, he trains well, he takes care of himself.

‘As the proverb goes, “A skinny dog is all fleas”. When the team is not doing well and not winning games, stories are created that are not real – like this one that is not real.

‘It is a headline that is the result of the bad situation of the team.

‘Hannibal is an excellent professional and everyone is happy with him, including the head coach, and, as I already said, we are convinced he is going to make it with Sevilla.’

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