The Barça team must recover from the march of the most important player in its history and it has to do so in a very short time. Next Sunday he will begin his participation in LaLiga by receiving Real Sociedad in what will be the first official stake without him since his goodbye.
FC Barcelona is a club with high ambitions as it is one of the largest in the world, regardless of the delicate economic situation it is going through. That is why, even without Lionel Messi, Ronald Koeman’s pupils must consider how they are going to do it to try to compete for everything and with dignity. There are some key points in that regard:
Even in favorable economic conditions, replacing the Argentine with a signing would be impossible due to all that it means to have him on the pitch. He is an “all-field player” capable of scoring and assisting, but also of unbalancing, lowering to build, associating with his teammates in a very vertical way, dragging players to free his own … Rosario’s impact on the pitch transcends beyond its numbers.
Globally, the previous captains take a step forward and we will see Sergio Busquets wear the bracelet on a regular basis. The second will be Gerard Piqué and, if he continues, the third will be Sergi Roberto. Will be waiting to know who is the fourth. Managing this new role by the heavyweights of the locker room will be a very important section.
The clearest case is that of Pedro González “Pedri” who, after a well-deserved and necessary vacation, would be surprising if he does not increase his figure of four goals and six assists in the previous year. At his young age, he has grown by leaps and bounds, which is more of a premonition about insurance than an obligation.
An optimal recovery of Ansu Fati and Ousmane Dembélé, who begins his last year of contract and should perform at a high level to think about whether to renew or whether he wants to receive a great bonus in case of leaving free, will also be key in two footballers who they open up the field and they can attack space very well.
Lionel Messi signed 38 goals and distributed 14 assists in the previous year, participating in 52 of the 122 (42.62%) that the Barça team signed in all competitions. These figures will have to be divided between an Antoine Griezmann who will be the offensive leader and who comes from signing 20 goals and 13 goals in the previous year. The impact of newly arrived Memphis Depay and Sergio “el Kun” Agüero will also be key to alleviating the departure of The flea.
There are high probabilities that, at least initially, FC Barcelona may have more problems when scoring because they have not finished developing automatisms and synergies between the players who have arrived this summer. That is why it will be important to improve on the defensive side, not especially bright during the previous exercise. A clear example of this is the Real Madrid winner of LaLiga after the goodbye of Cristiano Ronaldo, where the lack of goal was alleviated by conceding little.
Ronald Koeman has played a very complicated role, since there was a lot of optimism at the club about the signing of Lionel Messi’s contract and, probably, he has planned the course with him. In his last year of his contract, he will have the difficult mission of renewing himself without his key piece and drawing up a game idea with which to continue competing for everything one week before the start of LaLiga. It will be especially difficult in the Champions League.