Gijon snare Barca youngster

Image: Guardiola: Sanctioned deal

Sporting Gijon have wrapped up a season-long loan deal for highly-rated Barca youngster Alberto Botia.

Botia sent out on loan by Catalan giants

Sporting Gijon have wrapped up a deal that will see highly-rated Barcelona youngster Alberto Botia spend the season on loan with them, concluding their defensive rebuilding. The 20-year-old centre-half is also keen on the transfer as he will gain invaluable first-team experience in the Primera Liga in a deal that does not include a purchase option. Barca's technical secretary Txiki Begiristain thinks that it is a good move for Botia and has held negotiations with Sporting in recent days to push the deal through. Now the Spain U21 international will join up with the Austrian outfit for pre-season training and not appear for Barcelona in the forthcoming Wembley Cup as planned. Botia, who joined Barcelona at the age of 11, has worked his way up through the ranks at Camp Nou and made his debut for Pep Guardiola's first-team squad last season. Having impressed in Luis Enrique's B team side he was given the chance to taste life at the highest level at Barca when he replaced Gerard Pique in the final game of the 2008/09 campaign against Deportivo La Coruna.

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