Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Update On The Future Of This Barcelona Midfielder: Should Xavi Cut Him Loose?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent report, Fichajes offered an update on the future of Barcelona midfielder Miralem Pjanic this summer. It has been claimed that the Barca midfield ace is considering offers from AC Milan, Juventus, Fiorentina and Napoli in this off-season.

Pjanic’s Impressive Loan Spell In Turkish Football

Pjanic enjoyed a decent loan spell at Besiktas last season when he put in a few impressive displays at the heart of their midfield. The 32-year-old made 26 appearances for the Turkish outfit in the previous campaign, grabbing four assists in the process across all fronts.

The Bosnia-Herzegovina talent was a consistent performer at both ends of the field after he averaged 1.1 tackles, 1.4 interceptions, 1.1 shots, 2.0 key passes and 0.6 dribbles per 90 minutes in the Turkish Super Lig. He was even accurate with his ball distribution after making 86.2% of his attempted passes in league football (stats via whoscored).

Barcelona (Xavi)
Barcelona’s Spanish coach Xavi reacts from the sidelines during the UEFA Europa League quarter-final, first-leg football match Eintracht Frankfurt v FC Barcelona in Frankfurt, western Germany on April 7, 2022. (Photo by DANIEL ROLAND/AFP via Getty Images). The 4th Official uses images provided by the following image agency: Getty Images (https://www.gettyimages.de/) Imago Images (https://www.imago-images.de/)

Should Barcelona Boss Xavi Cut Pjanic Loose This Summer?

Pjanic is a solid tackler of the ball and can earn the ball back for his side on the defensive end of the field. He can strike the ball well from long range and has got the vision to cut open the opposition defence with a killer pass in the final third. The Bosnia-Herzegovina international is primarily a box-to-box midfielder but can even function as a defensive midfielder or play in the number ten position if his manager asks him to do so.

However, Pjanic is currently surplus to requirements at the Nou Camp as he has fallen behind Gavi, Pedri, Franck Kessie, Sergio Busquets and Nico Gonzelez in Xavi‘s pecking order. At 32, the talented midfielder is not getting any younger and needs to ensure regular playing opportunities in the coming seasons.

Therefore, it makes sense for Barca to cut him loose this summer and use the money generated from his potential sale to strengthen other areas of their squad. His departure will also clear up space in Barcelona‘s wage bill for other incoming transfers in the future.

With all things considered, it makes sense for the Catalan outfit to cash in on Pjanic despite the player still having two years left in his current contract with the club.

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