La Liga giants FC Barcelona ruled Spain and staked their claim in Europe as well for the better part of the millennium. The previous year and a half have been nothing short of a nightmare for the club, as well as the fans. The respite of always having their stalwart, Lionel Messi with them no matter how bad things got, also shattered this summer.
The constant managerial changes, the departure of their ace player, the questionable transfers, and above all, a poor authority board marked an unprecedented fall. Exit from the Champions League group stages and the other cup competitions have diminished the already small expectations from the club this season.
To rub salt in the wounds, their arch-rivals Real Madrid, who were also going through a transition period, are relatively unscathed. Covered by the reputable Vietnamese sports platform “Vwin”-the question remains, how can Barcelona once again be a force to be reckoned with.
Barcelona has decided to go trust their DNA and have called upon legends like Xavi and Dani Alves. Their decision to bring upon experienced coaches has not worked in the past for the club. In fact, their most successful coach, Pep Guardiola, was also a by-product of their DNA.
The club has to back Xavi at all costs, with the former midfielder being a core part of the side that rose from mediocrity to perfection.
Another thing that the club has to persist with is the backing of the youth. The latest batch of La Masia graduates has shown immense promise. Players like Ansu Fati, Pedri, Gavi, Nico, Mingueza, and Araujo should continue to be integrated with the first team regularly.
One of the key lessons that Barcelona should take from their mistakes comes in the form of the transfer market. Their decision to utilize the money from the infamous Neymar transfer to bring in the likes of Ousmane Dembele, Phillipe Coutinho, and Antoinne Griezmann marks one of the most loss-inducing moves in the sport’s history. As things stand, none of the three players are with the club.
The club has secured some smart signings like Eric Garcia and Ferran Torres, strengthening their Spanish core even more. An area for Barcelona to ponder upon is the depth of the squad.
The club desperately lacks players in defense and midfield. With the old stalwarts like Jordi Alba, Pique, and Sergio Busquets’ time running out, the Blaugrana will have to figure out to rope in more names.
Barcelona’s current financial structure, crippled with a debt of over a billion Euros, is so weak that they had to plead Samuel Umtiti into accepting a low offer, just to be able to register Torres. Working their debt out slowly until stability and securing able transfers at a reasonable price would be key in the club’s second uprise. This is why the upcoming summer transfer window is integral to their aspirations. The club can either be patient, and trust their thin squad to hustle it out for one more season, or they can dive into the market by selling some of their players.
Despite investing over 350 million Euros in Coutinho, Dembele, and Griezmann, the club is only likely to receive less than a hundred million upon their departures.
The promising youngsters, who lack experience are a good long-term option. Until they come of age, Barcelona will have to ensure to create a good structure or model from top to bottom at the club. It is also necessary that Xavi’s vision and the project are not halted before the club is stable, at least on the pitch, being of such caliber to produce the optimum result consistently.