We’re all set. Xavi will have most of his team back to action today, with a squad far from complete. Most Barcelona players will start the pre-season today. However, the players that played with their national teams have a permission to join the trainings a week from now. How will the pre-season look for Barcelona this summer? Let’s see.
First of all, Xavi knows that this is going to be a pretty weird season. In the middle of the season, the team will lose most players for the World Cup in Qatar. So between November and December, Barcelona will have to go through another ‘Pre-season’.
Shaping up the squad
According to recent reports, Xavi allowed 6 players to not attend pre-season training with Barcelona: Neto, Mingueza, Umtiti, Riqui, Wague and Braithwaite will have to find a solution for their future. They might join trainings anyway for their fitness. But they know that they’re not in the plans of Xavi.
Other players that will have to find a solution for their future are those that are back from loan. Pjanic, Trincao, Collado and Inaki Pena will have a chance to impress Xavi. But it’s fair to say that only Inaki Pena has good chances to stay, and for the rest it will be hard.
Another enigma is Ousmane Dembele. The Frenchman is out of contract with Barcelona, and can’t join pre-season trainings without accepting the offer. According to recent reports, Dembele is close to accept the offer of Barcelona. But he’s yet to do that.
The new signings will also join trainings soon. Pablo Torre will start the pre-season from day 1. Meanwhile, Laporta said that Kessie and Christensen will be presented on Wednesday and Thursday. They will join the trainings right after their presentations.
The next days until the other players will join the trainings will be a great opportunity for many La Masia players to train with the first team and impress Xavi. Ilias, Abde, Fabio Blanco and others will have a golden opportunity.
In a week Xavi will have a better idea about his squad in the next weeks. He will take decisions on La Masia players and those who are back from loan.
The first match of this pre-season will be vs Olot on July 13. In that game, the players that start pre-season on time will have the opportunity to keep their place for the rest of the summer.
Next, Xavi will decide on the squad that will travel to the summer tour in USA. Who will join from La Masia? It depends on the trainings, and the players that the club will manage to sign by then.
On July 20, Barcelona will play a game vs Inter Miami. 4 days later, we will have ‘El Clasico’ friendly in Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.
On July 27, Barcelona will meet Juventus in the Cottol Bowl stadium in Dallas. And then, the last game of the US tour will be vs NY Red Bulls in Red Bull Arena, Harrison. Afterwards, the team will be back to Barcelona for the last days of pre-season. On August 6, the Gamper Cup should take place, although the opponent is still unknown.
Still many unanswered question to answer. But during pre-season we will get a better idea on how Xavi’s Barcelona will looks next season.
On August 13, Barcelona will meet Rayo at the Camp nou for the first match of La Liga.