The Italian remains the best option available
The acquisition of Nelson Semedo is only the start of Barcelona’s rather late entry into the transfer market.
There is still a need for someone to take over the creative duties from Andres Iniesta and the most sought-after name is Marco Verratti.
While many consider the Italian an absolute necessity to re-establishing midfield dominance, the lack of secondary options is rather disappointing.
Many fans want to see a marquee signing in the middle of the park irrespective of whether it’s the PSG man or not, contrary to the speculated stance of “Verratti or bust” that is being paraded around in the general media.
I’m here to give you three reasons why Barcelona should wait for the Italy international:
Verratti is arguably one of the best central midfielders in the world at this moment, only behind names like Iniesta, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos.
While Atletico Madrid’s Koke and former academy graduate Thiago Alcantara are alternatives, neither has performed with the consistency of the Italian maestro.
Koke has flitted between being a wide midfielder and a central midfielder under Diego Simeone, while Thiago is yet to have a full season without injury in the bag.
In stark contrast, Verratti has gone from strength to strength in a career that has made him a household name at the young age of 24.
There are very few players who can rival Verratti’s output and no matter who you pick, the Italian trumps them with his all-round excellence.
2. Existing Personnel
Barcelona have a plethora of midfielders at their disposal and if one were to be brutally honest, there is not a single midfielder outside the big three (Busquets, Rakitic and Iniesta) capable of performing at the highest level.
However, all the rotational options available have one thing in common: they are all incredibly young with oodles of potential. Whether it’s Rafinha, Denis Suarez, Sergi Roberto or the polarising Andre Gomes.
Barca has no dearth of young talent and should Verratti not arrive, it would be madness to instead sign another below par player to the already growing bench.
Sergi Samper and Carles Alena could be looking at first team minutes as well, while Arda Turan’s agent continues to insist he will stay.
We might not like it, but if Verratti is unobtainable, it might be a good idea to spend another year with the options at hand instead of spending big.
3. Clear Plan
The fact that the board has identified Verratti as the man to spend their money on is a welcome relief from the days when Philippe Coutinho was the only name floating around the rumor mill.
The Paulinho speculation continue to persist despite the Chinese window closing, and if those two names are the only options in the club’s mind, then it might not be such a bad idea to stay dormant for the rest of the window.
We all love talents like Coutinho, but not only are they misfits in the Barcelona set-up, they’re expensive signings requiring commitment from the fans.
The fans cannot disown talent like Coutinho even if he fails to perform as expected due to the massive fee that would likely be involved in any potential move.
If the move were to not work well, we would be stuck with an expensive bench piece who only closes out games and is forced into the line-up.
Chasing a particular profile not only signifies intent, it also points towards a more definitive sporting plan, which we desperately need.