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Eric Abidal: 'Barca pushed me out after liver transplant'

PUSHED OUT: Eric Abidal playing for Barcelona in 2011 (PA)

FRENCH LEFT-BACK Eric Abidal has torn into Barcelona for how the club treated him following a liver transplant that left the footballer unable to play.

Now fully recovered and playing for Monaco, Abidal said his former club pushed him out because of his medical condition but claimed he would have probably stayed if manager Pep Guardiola had remained at the helm.

The defender told French publication L’Equipe: “If Guardiola was still at Barça then I would probably have stayed.

“He is someone who appreciated me and we have stayed in contact. He is a wonderful coach.”

Abidal claimed Barcelona insisted on selling him over the summer because they believed he was no longer fit enough.

Concerning his defensive role at Claudio Ranieri’s Monaco, Abidal added: “At my age it is easier to play in the centre with a younger full-back alongside me. But the main thing is that the coach knows I can play in both positions.”

In response to Abidal’s accusations of non-payment, a Barcelona source told Spanish paper AS: “Abidal was paid in full under his contract and on time.

“Barça have been up to date at all moments, paying all the instalments.

“A part came from the medical insurers, although this part was very small.”

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