How it all began
11th May 2022. One of the most reliable journalists with regards to FC Barcelona drops on bombshell on the future of Frenkie De Jong. He claims that the Dutch midfielder is 95% certain to move to Manchester United this summer.
While the reason for this sudden transfer was unknown, it was claimed that De Jong’s wages were proving to be an issue given the recent financial turmoil faced by the Catalan giants. Soon after, rumors began to circulate in the media that if De Jong leaves, Barca would move for Man City’s Bernardo Silva, and sign him at lower wages.
While this seems to be an exciting deal on the face of it, there are indeed two sides to it. We discuss both aspects of it below.
The need for Bernardo Silva
Bernardo Silva is a world-class midfielder. Over the past few seasons, he has been an integral player in the Man City midfield. Given the fact that Xavi aspires to play in the same way as his mentor Pep would, it is no rocket science that Bernardo would indeed fit in well at Barca.
His role at City is that of a controlling midfielder, who tends to have that creative touch. While Barca, does have a plethora of young midfielders at their disposal, no one is as developed as Bernardo yet. Alongside the likes of Busquets and Pedri, Bernardo would perfectly fit into the Barca midfield in our opinion.
Also, given the fact that De Jong might leave the club, it is important that FC Barcelona does replace him with a midfielder of equal, if not better in quality.
But, is Bernardo really all that needed?
Sergio Busquets. Pedri. Gavi. Nico Gonzalez. Franck Kessie. FC Barcelona has an abundance of quality midfielders at their club right now. Add young prospect, Pablo Torre, to the mix and you have an exciting mix of youth and experience in your midfield.
And even though Bernardo is a player who would seamlessly fit into Xavi’s plans, is he really all that is needed?
FC Barcelona has been pretty active in this transfer window and has built amazing depth in midfield and attack. But what about the defense? Christensen has been signed on a free transfer. Jules Kounde has been heavily linked to FC Barcelona. However, there are other areas of the defense also that need sorting.
Jordi Alba is aging and apart from Alejandro Balde, there isn’t adequate depth in the left-back department for FC Barcelona. It is also worth considering that Balde is still very young and was heavily injured last season. Moving over to the right side, FC Barcelona only has Sergino Dest and Sergi Roberto as their fullback options. Although Araujo is someone who can do a job at right back, one would argue that he is better suited to the center back position.
Moreover, Sergi Roberto is not someone whom you could rely upon in defense. Barca does remain the strong favorite to sign Azpilicueta, but the Spanish international is on the wrong side of his thirties right now and it is safe to say that FC Barcelona would do better with a younger prospect.
While Bernardo Silva is indeed a quality player with the Barca DNA, he would cost huge money in the current market and he is also 2-3 years older than Frenkie De Jong. While the sale of Frenkie would leave a huge void in Barca’s midfield, the Catalan giants still have plenty of players to fill that hole.
If the Dutch midfielder really has to sold, one would argue that Barca could probably use the money generated from this transfer in a smarter way. They have already spent big money on players like Lewandowski and Raphinha this summer. Hence, it would make more sense for Joan Laporta and his men to spend their funds in a wiser manner.
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