Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Barcelona Identify This Bundesliga Defender As A Target: Should Xavi Bring Him On Board?

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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, AS mentioned that Barcelona have identified Borrusia Dortmund defender Thomas Meunier as a target for the upcoming transfer window. It has been claimed that the Catalan club are eyeing a move for the Belgian full-back in this off-season.

Meunier’s Impressive Form For Dortmund This Season

Meunier has experienced a solid campaign at Signal Iduna Park as he has put in a series of impressive performances on the right side of Dortmund’s defence. The 31-year-old has made 18 appearances for the German club this season, picking up one assist in the process across various competitions.

The Belgian talent has been a decent performer on the right flank and has done well to average 1.6 tackles, 0.9 interceptions and 1.5 clearances per 90 minutes in Bundesliga. However, he lacks quality when distributing the ball in the opponent’s half after making just 73.1% of his attempted passes in the German first division (stats via whoscored).

Meunier’s current contract at the German club will run out in 2024. Thus, it makes sense for Barcelona to arrange a cut-price move for him this summer.

Thomas Meunier
Croatia’s defender #19 Borna Sosa fights for the ball with Belgium’s defender #15 Thomas Meunier during the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group F football match between Croatia and Belgium at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al-Rayyan, west of Doha on December 1, 2022. (Photo by JACK GUEZ / AFP) (Photo by JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images)

Should Barcelona Boss Xavi Bring Meunier On Board?

Meunier is a solid tackler of the ball and can time his challenges well to earn possession back for his team inside his half. He usually clears the danger when needed and can create the odd chance for his teammates from the right flank.

The Belgian right-back is primarily a right-back but can also fill in as a right-winger if asked to do so. We can expect him to bring more quality to Barcelona boss Xavi’s first team.

At 31, Meunier has still got plenty of football left in him to play at a high level which makes him a decent option for Barca to consider this summer. He has what it takes to secure a regular starting spot at the Nou Camp next season and would serve as an upgrade over Sergi Roberto at the Catalan club.

Hence, Xavi would be wise to bring Meunier on board when the transfer window commences later this month as he could help the Catalan giants challenge for more major trophies in the not-too-distant future.

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