It’s a matter of perspective

FC Barcelona, for all intents and purposes, is a desperate club right now. The Neymar transfer debacle has ended, and now the team wants to sign players to reinforce the squad and replace him.

So why are they so bad at it?

The board’s main targets since the Brazilian’s departure have been Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembélé. Both have been “a few hours away” from signing for about, oh, five days now. The board is obviously having trouble getting things done. Likewise, they seem to be going for high-profile targets when there are other options available, which further complicates things.

Part of the problem regarding those two is the timing of Neymar’s leaving. With August turning the corner and the preseason almost over, teams like Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund have all the leverage. They can ask for whatever they want because they know these signings have to be made as soon as possible (or at least that the current Barça board deems them necessary).

This is why Dortmund, according to reports, have valued the 20-year old Frenchman at 150+ million. He’s good, don’t get me wrong, and I do believe his signing would be amazing, but he isn’t worth that as we speak. Not even in this current transfer climate.

He also hasn’t helped his own situation at all by skipping training without notifying anyone at BVB. Despite L’Equipe reporting his signing is imminent, the team must now be trying even less to facilitate this move. Put yourself in their shoes. If I was Peter Bosz, I wouldn’t appreciate Ousmane dipping for hours without me knowing anything about him. If it is Dembélé’s dream to play for Barcelona, there are better ways to push for a move your team doesn’t want.

But Dortmund are willing to sell him, if only for the right price.

Liverpool, however, and the enigmatic German Jürgen Klopp, refuse to sell Coutinho. They feel he is too important to their team and, quite frankly, they’re right – he is their best player. While some believe those above Klopp in the team’s directors would approve a sale for monetary reasons – he’d most likely bring at least 100 million – nothing to prove that has materialized. And with Klopp now saying “we will not sell Philippe Coutinho at any price”, it’s looking like a third Barcelona bid won’t be much help.

On top of this, the board seems hell-bent on signing players that, while they admittedly have quality, will ultimately make a splash. Names like Iñigo Martínez and Jean-Michaël Seri, by all accounts, would like to join Barcelona. They are very good players that could fit in well here, with a price tag much less cumbersome than Coutinho’s or Dembélé’s. So why aren’t those deals happening? The board should at least be working on those transfers, as a way to cover all their bases.

The deals aren’t happening because those players aren’t as famous, won’t make as much of a splash, won’t sell as many kits, and won’t bring in as much revenue. They should be happening though. It could very well occur that by focusing on such sensational signings, we miss these smaller, sensible ones and we end up signing nobody because we’ve taken too much time.

Another angle to the issue is if we really need to sign anyone at all. There are some who believe Gerard Deulofeu with some Denis Suárez will be just fine filling in on the left side, while others heap praise on Dembélé and insist we need him. Signing Coutinho won’t add anything new to the side. He might be better than anyone we have right now, but is he 100 million euros better?

I don’t pretend to have the answer to these questions, although I do have my opinions (I would pay up for Dembélé, but I wouldn’t for Coutinho). Only time will tell, if they are signed. But if we are unable to sign them, I do think it’s worth giving time to players like Sergi Samper, Munir el Haddadi, and Deulofeu. We might not be sure of what they can do yet, but that’s because the team hasn’t given them a chance to show us yet. Homegrown talent has been in short supply lately, and I’m not alone in voicing my displeasure towards this growing trend of commercialism the board is preferring. At the end of the day, the worst thing we could do with the 222 million euros of Neymar money could be to actually spend it at all.

And of course, the current system doesn’t help either. Teams have all the leverage to retain their player without buyout clauses, even if the player wants to leave (look at Coutinho). They can slap an exorbitant price tag on players (look at Dembélé) and dare us to pay it.

It doesn’t help when #NextFewHours is a thing either. Reports have stated three times already that the Coutinho deal was done, and we were supposed to unveil a signing before the Gamper match against Chapecoense. This, along with rumors of Dybala, Mbappé, and even Isco will always be there. After all, people can say whatever they want on the internet, regardless of truth.

Fans are disappointed, and with good reason, but there’s also a reason why nothing is happening. There’s also a reason why teams aren’t cooperating, just like there’s a reason this isn’t all the board’s fault. There’s also reasons why we shouldn’t sign anyone, at least not the ones we’re trying hardest to sign. So please curb your enthusiasm. On the other hand, try to tone down your frustrations.

On second thought, maybe you’re angry. That’s ok. Everyone has different opinions.

This situation is all a matter of perspective. Because perspective matters.

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  • Grega Kavčič

    Another way how Lucho f*** barca.

    He was incompetent when playing new players or the youth and even if we did not have a homegrown Messi, Iniesta or Xavi, we would have a Morata, players that don’t have the absolute quality but would sell for 50million plus in this market.

    • serko10

      that asshole left leaving a gigantic mess. don’t say i didn’t tell people here so 😉

      • Kneowell Anyanwu

        What mess if i may ask? You meant to say he left a mess of a team?

        • serko10

          yup. an incoherent mess of a squad with no clear direction, no deeper intricate paterns and creativity as a unit, a ton of players that seem to be randomly picked and added to the squad but don’t fit any sort of puzzle. madrid is the more creative attractive team by a distance now when it comes to ability, creativity, patterns etc . by far

          • Kneowell Anyanwu

            Ok i agree with madrid being better off, but i also do know we have the players and you also did agree with this, infact i remember you saying any coach who has the of player lucho had should be more dominant, here we are with the next coach, we would all be watching.
            and by the way, have you noticed his silence as regards to signings? Is that not a red flag already? I dont know maybe just me but i did remember a certain mess of a coach had his say in choosing signings when he came on

    • Kneowell Anyanwu

      I cant help but notice how quite this new coach has been when it comes to preffered signings and addition to the squad he would love to have, it really really worries me. Lucho might be everything you call him but not a coward, atleast he had the balls to make the calls the minute he was hired. Whether those calls turned out to be good or bad is a topic for another day, but the point is that he chose his squad (except for douglas, vermaleen and turan which were imposed by zubizareta and the board). It beats me how valverde cant even point to one person in the league, or from his former club, or as suggested from outside source which he could insist to be brought on.

  • kaso

    FYI, players like Sergi Samper, Munir el Haddadi, Deulofeu and Denis Suárez won’t make the team compete against top teams.

  • Oleguer Presas

    “But if we are unable to sign them, I do think it’s worth giving time to
    players like Sergi Samper, Munir el Haddadi, and Deulofeu. We might not
    be sure of what they can do yet, but that’s because the team hasn’t
    given them a chance to show us yet.”

    Are you fucking kidding me ? Barcelona gave Munir, Samper and Deulofeu 1000000 chances only to understand at the end, that those La Masia “talents” are plain shit and simply not good enough for the team. Did Messi or Iniesta need 1000000 chances to prove themselves ? No. Messi was worldclass even as a teenager. And Munir and Deulofeu ? They will never be good enough, not even in 10000 years. As i said before: La Masia is obsolete and should be completely dissolved. We need to sell Munir, Roberto, Deulofeu, Rafinha, Samper and every other so called “La Masia talent”. We have to sign more star players, just like Real Madrid.

    • Oleguer Presas

      And by the way Luis Garcia:
      I really hate Barcelona fans like you permanently saying “We have to give a chance to our youth”.
      Do you really think Barcelona can the UCL with players like Munir or Samper ? Grow the f*** up !
      These players are useless and they are the reason, why Real Madrid fans mock us now.

      • Grega Kavčič

        I agree to some extent.

        Firstly I do not think they got a good chance to show what they can do. A first round cup game playing only with bench players does not show anything about the player if he does extremely well or extremely bad. These players must play almost always one by one in the league with Messi by their side or other players that are starting eleven in their position.

        Second… OK, if these players are not barca material they must pump them up like Madrid morata and other players so other clubs in this market must pay 50million for them, so barca sell two homegrown players and sign a coutinho. Likewise scouts must to their job and find a coutinho/Mbappe/Dembele before they sign with a team with no release clause.

        The other thing that pisses me off right now is players themselves not insisting in a buyout when they sign a contract. If Neymar would have gone differently (timing and so on) I think I would be very very happy that he left for that lump of cash!

        Like suarez, if you wan’t to someday play for Barca, Real or Liverpool, get them to write it in your f**** contract and these big clubs will have no problem with paying the buyout. If coutinho were 100% honest with himself he should have said I will sign for 5 years with liverpool, but if Barca come calling and I wan’t to go there the buyout is 100million.

        The same with dembele. They signed him for 15million, if he said then set my buyout at 80 million and I will sign the contract, BVB would just smile and say sure thing Dembe no problem you might really turn out to be a superstar buit that’s a lot of profit if you do go.

        • Oleguer Presas

          They got enough chances. Munir even played against Real Madrid 2 years ago, but this monkey faced retard missed a clear 100% chance. An idiot that cant even hit the empty goal from 7 or 8 metres isnt good enough for Barcelona. Denis Suarez and Deulofeu failed to deliver abroad, Samper is shit and Roberto a wanna-be-Xavi who will never have his quality. The difference between Morata and those La Masia “talents” is the fact that Morata has at least some good quality and can shine in important matches. Thats why his market value is that high.

          The board has to finally accept that La Masia has become the laughingstock of the club. Catalan players are overrated. I would rather open football schools in high potential countries like China, Brazil and India than insisting on LaMasia. This primitive “LaMasia first” policy has to end immediately and the squad needs more ethnical diversity than Catalan nationalism.

          • Grega Kavčič

            What are you blabering about… Neymar missed as many chances as the whole team combined and Suarez can also waste a good one.

            It would not take much to replace him when it comes to missed chances even by la masia folk.

          • Oleguer Presas

            Neymar can dribble like God and his passes are very accurate for a winger. Munir dribbles and passes like a retard. And he even misses empty goals. La Masia is shit !

        • Kneowell Anyanwu

          If you were a club and you had the option of morata and asensio from madrid and delofeu and munir from barca all at the same cummulative amount of say €50m from each club, which duo would you go for? You and i both knowbyou wont choose the barca duo at that price. See? Quality to a very large extent sets the price, not the board, so they cant just “pump up” the price.
          i do agree with your take on our scout though. They should do a better job than wait for the next talented superstar to show up on their door step.
          one other thing i would add to your plenty very valid suggestions is that the board must treat the youth teams like the first team if we are to continue reaping from the youth system, they must actively and consciously hunt for talents to fill our youth ranks and not just average players and they must carefully select sound and suitable coaches for the various youth sides to nurture these talents. Its no coincidence that pep could work with a lot of them when he was made first team coach, this is because he personally nurtured a whole lot of them himself, this is why we should hire a xavi to start hos coaching project with these boys because he understands the system what it means to come from the rank.

          • Grega Kavčič

            You don’t get how this works.We are not questioning the sales but the buildup to the sales. The sale price is 90% what the first team coach does and how he handles these players. Even if they are not the best you can lie to the press and praise them, not go out and say he doesn’t train, no hart, busy on social media and so on. Lucho was shit at many things but at marketing like this he was a special kind of turd.

            Read this and weep: http://www.goal.com/en/news/asensio-ceballos-isco-real-madrid-barca-shame-transfer/1w3w54kp5yll1wzg65bg381nx

            All players who could have been bought cheap and shipped for the same price or some 10x the price if there was no room in the first team. Modric and Isco were really a huge barca f****.

            The only positive has been Suarez, becouse if he went to Madrid we would have won nothing since then.

          • Kneowell Anyanwu

            Maybe i agree to some extent, but the sale in itself is not 90% the coach, but 90% the player. Give asensio ten minutes and he’ll wreck havoc, give morata 30 munites and he’ll score or assist, even play a sergi roberto out of position like RB and he will perform better than the naturals we currently have. The player has to make it easy for the coach thats my point. Munir and delofeu got more playing time in valencia and everton than morata and asensio did in madrid but we cant see a remarkable improvement in them. Its no coincidence that 3 clubs are ready to pay sergi roberto’s buyout clause if we are ready to sell, its because they can clearly see his potential and thr coach or club doesnt have to say jack. We didnt have to advertise neymar before psg came for him, you could clearly see what hes worth on the pitch, i dont think any serious club will base their assessment of a player based on what the coach or the club says about him. Dembele has been disrespectful to dortmund of late and has been sanctioned but it doesnt stop barca from proceeding with their bid. No matter how much we praise a munir and delofeu, i cant spend 20m on any of them, but i can buy an asensio or sergi roberto fro 40-50m. I would even buy an alena and samper at a higher price than any of munir and delofeu.

          • Grega Kavčič

            Again… writing with no order whatsoever. Munir could have been sold years ago for a lot of monney or even better still market him better. Barca did not want to sell him, he had a stellar preseaseason when his strikerate was almost 100%, something Suarez and Neymar can only dream of.

          • Kneowell Anyanwu

            The best price we got for Munir 3 seasons ago was €12m. How many goals did he manage with the 100% strike rate? Talk figures grega not fiction. The yardstick to measure a striker I believe is the easiest in football. And then I asked you again if you would prefer a Munir and Sandro/samper to a Morata and Asensio if you were a club’s manager, you haven’t managed to answer that

          • Kneowell Anyanwu

            I completely agree with you though on the aspect of those player we could have got but left to madrid, the board goofed on all of that

          • Evans Dollarbillz Dagadu

            The problem is still the board, the scouts will bring in the talents but will the baboons up there sign I believe you and I know the answer is a big fat fuckin NO. And if I was a scout for Barca the only scouting I’d do is to scout for a new club for me to work with

  • Kneowell Anyanwu

    The certainty to with which the writer said coutinho wont add anything to the team, that beats me.
    every side or perspective could make a good arguement for spending or not spending that cash, but the consequences of action or inaction would only be seen in the course and at the end of the season, and all of the blame will fall on the board for action or inaction. As much as i am a proponent of la masia, i wont delude myself hoping to get anything worthwhile from the current crop of youngsters we have (except alena and samper) and we have only the board to blame for that as they payed less attention to our core sporting values and more to commercial. So i would say spend on both coutinho and dembele cos we have the money and it is of no use to us cooling off in some bank while neymar tries to make the most of it all in psg. We should get both players even of they cost us €270m as we were gonna sign players anyways even of neymar wasnt sold. Only then can we hope for a promising season. Yes we might decide not to spend and go ahead to do a double or a treble which would be every cules wet dream, but the likeliness of that happening is very far fetched if fetchable at all. But if we end up trophyless £222m in some bank? We may never be able to live with that. Sign up and if we win all or double? Beautiful and if we dont? Sack the damn coach ( cos i dont see is having coutinho, dembele, suarez, messi, iniesta, busquet, roberto, gomes, rakitic, samper/alena, alba, digne, umtiti, pique, mash/malon,semedo, vidal and not win trophies except the coach is dumb)

  • Grega Kavčič

    Damn.. just wanted to write today, that Pique is acting like he is retired and if we don’t have a replacement we are burnt no matter the attacking additions.

    • Grega Kavčič

      Presidente? Yes!

      … just don’t play him in defence anymore. :S

    • Kneowell Anyanwu

      I agree 100%

      • Grega Kavčič

        Hey man… remeber the time you were praising the board and how financialy stable they made barca bullshit? Too late now…

        For me it’s Messi first, barca second, I hope City somehow buy him. :/

        • Kneowell Anyanwu

          Oh well I have always held a strong opinion at anything I think was done right, the board has got a lot wrong no doubt, but not everything.
          We will all be alive to watch Messi leave or retire one day, just as we will also all watch boards come and go, but through it all I’ll be a barca fan as I was ever before Messi happened.

  • James Bryan Toeng

    So we got paulinho entering the squad on Thursday, [email protected] one day after the super copa. The board is gonna try to bring in coutinho n paulinho on the same say. From my perspectiv I
    don’t think dembele has proven himself enough yet for us to spend over 1oo mil on him. With that money we can even trigger ascensio release clause.

  • Thaa Real Horladex

    james you are right

  • Oleguer Presas

    Is this site dead ? No articles published anymore, no comments … f**k this site dammit.

    • David

      Honestly. Ever since they changed the website stylistically, replaced the comment section format from Facebook comments to Disqus, it all went to shit. And then you have their bi-monthly articles. What a shame.

  • jose

    If this stupid board didn’t f*ck up, our team could have looked like this today:

    Ter Stegen;
    Alves (YES!), Marquinhos, Laporte, Alaba;
    Thiago/Modric, Busquets, Isco;
    Messi, Suarez, Neymar.

    Did I mention they refused to pay 4.5 million euros for Marco Asensio after all scouting reports suggested he’ll be a future star?

    Barca’s problem are the people who are running the club. It has always been like that.

    Toni Kroos, Ozil, Di Maria, Isco, and Modric all wanted to join Barcelona but these idiots would not make a move for them. Real Madrid has the best squad in the world today… full of players with Barca DNA that we REJECTED or the club REFUSED to sign!!!

    • Muhammad Shahab

      Playing around with “what-if” line-ups isn’t a useful thing to do. Yes we could end up with that line-up but the reality is we don’t have that line-up.

      And since when did we have a chance to sign Alaba and Modric?

      • jose

        Retarded bandwagoners like you wouldn’t remember.

  • jose

    My thoughts for upcoming season:

    ter Stegen/Cillessen;
    Semedo/S.Roberto, Pique/I.Martinez[Sociedad], Umtiti/Mascherano, Alba/Digne;
    Jorginho[Napoli]/Rakitic/Samper, Busquets/Paulinho, Coutinho[Liverpool]/Iniesta/Rafinha;
    Messi/Deulofeu, Suarez/Paco, Dembele[Dortmund]/D.Suarez.

    OUT:
    – Douglas
    – A.Vidal
    – Vermaelen
    – Gomes
    – Turan

    IN:
    – Inigo Martinez [to challenge Pique]
    – Jorginho [Xavi type player to complete a Brazilian midfield]
    – Coutinho
    – Dembele