Xavi Hernandez has said for a while that he wants two top-class players in each position at Barcelona, and he’s gone a long way to having that wish granted this summer.
Now he’s met with a problem, particularly in attack and out wide. He has two starters for each position there, and all of them could be guaranteed a place in most XIs in the Champions League. Even Memphis Depay would likely find a place in a number of other sides while not seeming to have a role at the Camp Nou.
Ousmane Dembele is the first name to consider for the right. Xavi has made his feelings for the Frenchman clear and he’s likely to be first choice there. The coach believes that the player can be the best in the world in his position.
Then there’s Raphinha, who has arrived to compete with the Frenchman. He has won the fans over already, and Xavi has even tried him on the left and in the same XI as Dembele.
On the left, Ansu Fati and Ferran Torres will go head to head for a place in the XI.
The youngster has had a lot of injury problems since bursting into the first team, but he has looked fit in pre-season and Barcelona are getting excited about what he can do if he stays free of injuries.
The ex-Valencia man was a key player after arriving in January last season, playing 25 games across all competitions.
His versatility stood to him, and likely will this season, and he’ll be able to play all across the front and even provide an alternative option at no.9 behind both Robert Lewandowski and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Then Memphis‘ name comes up. Xavi has given him a run in pre-season but he’s not expected to have much of a part this coming season and might need to find a new club this month.
Xavi, as a result, has a very good problem to manage. He has a lot of high-quality players competing for places in a very important area of the team. Everybody knows they’ll have to deliver to keep hold of their place.