Barcelona are in a stage of transition with the club willing to part with a number of their existing stars. That also means that the manager would be ready to bring in a host of new players who can serve the club for a long time to come. While some of the members of the squad who are stated to be on their way out are underperformers such as Dembélé and Umtiti, others such as Suarez and Rakitić have served the club for a long time and are now past their prime.
However, Setién must now consider whether he should get rid of all the players that the media have been speculating about or whether he should keep some of the veteran members of the squad who can guide the youngsters to success in the coming seasons. Highlighting this thought, centre-back Ronald Araújo has stated after the game against Mallorca that Suarez had been of great help to him and guided him throughout his time at Barca.
His exact words to the official website of the club have been, “He’s helped me a lot and not only in football matters, and before the game, he gave me a hug.”
Luis Suarez’s exact situation at the club
The 33-year-old joined Barcelona at the peak of his career in 2014 and since then been part of the lethal trio of Messi, Suarez and Neymar (MSN to be short). His contributions for the club have been stupendous with Luis Suarez scoring 191 goals from 271 matches for the Catalan giants across all competitions.
However, the influence of the Uruguayan in recent years has diminished with new players like Fati and Braithwaite gradually taking centre stage. Moreover, the Cules are set to bring in new forwards like Lautaro Martínez from Inter Milan. This move will further reduce the necessity of the ex-Ajax man in the squad, and the management would feel that they could cash out on him and reduce the wage books this summer.
Would it be a wise move?
There is no denying the fact that Luis Suarez is a world-class footballer. On his day, he can be lethal in front of the opposition goal, and his performances have been the saving grace for the side time and again. However, age has certainly taken a toll on him and coupled with his injury problems; the forward does not look like a lucrative prospect any more.
Here it is to be remembered that Barcelona have never been the kind of team in the past who have parted with their stars just because age was taking a toll on their performances. Carles Puyol, Xavi and Iniesta have all been accommodated in the side for a long time, and their experience made use of smartly.
In this regard, it can be mentioned that this transfer season may prove unkind to the clubs and Inter’s high demand for Martinez may prove to be a stumbling block in Barca’s pursuit of the Argentine. Even though Fati has justified his selection in the team with his stellar displays, the Spaniard is still a kid and needs time and guidance to develop.
Luis Suarez may just prove to be the kind of squad member that the club needs with his experience and footballing acumen. While he may have an impact coming from the benches in tight situations, the Uruguay international can also be the guiding force of the youngsters. However, football nowadays is controlled by the financial equation, and Barca may be tempted to sell their star if they get the right price.