Competition Focus

FC Barcelona Has Two ‘New Signings’ For The Champions League

FC Barcelona has two new ‘signings’ for its Champions League push, as explained by AS on Wednesday morning in Spain.

The Blaugrana is currently on Italian shores, where it will face Napoli in the competition’s last 16 this week.

Under outgoing head coach Xavi Hernandez, who will leave his post on June 30, the Catalans have reached the knockout phase for the first time since 2021.

They would presumably like to send the manager off with a deep run on the continent, in the tournament a proud club hasn’t won since beating Napoli’s domestic rivals Juventus in a Berlin final eight years ago.

Barca has been severely depleted by injuries across the season, which hasn’t helped it defend the La Liga title won last spring.

Trailing arch nemesis Real Madrid by eight points at the summit, the heart and soul of the team in Gavi is perhaps the most notable absence, with the midfield lacking bite ever since he ruptured his ACL on international duty for Spain in mid-November.

Xavi has been boosted by the earlier than expected return of Joao Felix going into Wednesday’s first leg tie at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.

But as pointed out by AS, Barca is lifted on the whole thanks to the incorporation of two youngsters who are practically new signings for Europe’s elite competition.

Since Xavi’s men played their last group game against Royal Antwerp on December 13, a 3-2 defeat which cost over $3 million in lost per-win bonus money, we have witnessed the impressive emergences of Pau Cubarsi and Vitor Roque to the first team.

Cubarsi has been at Barca since he was 11 years of age and has now progressed from the La Masia academy to the heart of central defense to partner Ronald Araujo.

Mundo Deportivo expects him to start against Napoli, in what would be his debut on the biggest of stages in senior club football.

Vitor Roque also hasn’t featured in the Champions League yet. And while he isn’t predicted to run out from the offset in Naples, his two goals off the bench thus far since completing a deal that could reach north of $60 million could make him Xavi’s trump card.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button