Barca has managed to assemble a squad that looks ready to compete for all titles in the upcoming season. It’s not perfect but it’s far superior to what the coach had to work with last season. That being said there are still some clear weaknesses that need to be addressed. We covered one of these previously( the LB position) and this time it is the Barca Right Back position. We have managed to replace the great Dani Alves with (wait for it) Dani Alves. And now after his second stint at the club, there is still no long-term replacement.
Here lies the main difference between the RB and LB positions. The LB position has Jordi Alba as the undisputed starter for the team whereas the RB position is more of a conundrum. There are several options but Xavi doesn’t seem to have settled on who he will use especially in important games. We have only one natural RB in the squad-Sergino Dest. Unfortunately, he’s been wildly inconsistent and has failed to convince the coach that he’s the man for the job. He is only 21 and still has a chance to show he can be a starter. This will likely be a make-or-break season for him. If he can’t be consistent the club will likely look for a RB in the next summer window. The failed pursuit of Cesar Azpilicueta is a chance for Dest to make this position his own.
There is then Ronald Araujo, a natural CB who can also play at RB. Araujo has had some good games playing in this position but it’s clear that he’s much better as a CB. He’s a more conservative option that can lock up the left flank when coming up against pacy wingers. He provides defensive cover and is solid as a rock.
We will likely see a rotation between the two depending on the opposition and tactical set-up
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There are two alternatives to the aforementioned players.
Our latest signing( and the costliest defender in Barca history) can also play the RB spot He’s played there several times for both, France and Sevilla. Again just like Araujo his best position is CB. He’s one of the best CB’s in the league and it just seems redundant to not play to his strengths. Nevertheless, he can sometimes slot in as a back-up.
The last name on this list is our very own La Masia player and make-shift RB ( thanks to Luis Enrique). Roberto is actually a midfielder but has been deputised as an Right Back in the first team of Barca. He’s a versatile player and a good rotation piece but his performances at the RB position have been incredibly poor. Roberto is a massive defensive liability and lacks the awareness and defensive positioning required to play as a fullback. He’s at best an emergency player.
If I had to pick just one position as a liability it’d be the Right Back position. There is no clear starter and no real back-up either. Due to the club’s finances we will have to wait another season to see whether another actual RB will be brought in.
Hopefully, La Masia can produce another gem for us