Barcelona’s future midfield trio for post-Busquets era

Arthur #8 of Barcelona watched by Frenkie de Jong #21 of Barcelona. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
Arthur #8 of Barcelona watched by Frenkie de Jong #21 of Barcelona. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images) /

Barcelona fans may see a new midfield trio during the match against Ibiza which may hint towards the future of the Catalan midfield.

Both Ivan Rakitic and Arturo Vidal inclusion in the starting eleven against Granada on Sunday was quite a surprising decision by the new Barcelona coach, Quique Setien.

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However, the circumstances were unavoidable due to Frenkie de Jong’s suspension with a red card against Espanyol and Arthur just coming back from his knee injury.

During the match on Sunday, The much-awaited youngster, Riqui Puig, made quite an impression with more passes than any player on the opposition squad despite entering the match at the 71st minute. He also managed to receive the ball from Messi more times than what both Griezmann and Ansu Fatti had managed to do throughout the match.

There can now be a serious consideration to move the 20-year-old up the ranks into the senior squad on a more regular basis as an ideal replacement to the legendary midfielder, Andres Iniesta.

The La Masia graduate has displayed his immense potential which was further proven as he replaced Rakitic and managed to play a crucial role in the only goal of the game.

After Barca’s social media posted a photo of De Jong, Puig and Arthur in training, fans started speculating how the trio could be set to play together for the first time ever in the Copa del Rey in Ibiza. This only seems to be confirmed further by the revelation that Busquets won’t be traveling to Ibiza for the match.

This seems to be the future of Barcelona’s trio with Busquets at 31 years, Rakitic also turning 32 in March and Vidal 33 in May. With both Rakitic and Vidal linked with transfers and moves to Italy in the summer transfer window, Forbes reports that Busquets is also likely to follow the footsteps of former teammates, Xavi Hernandez and Iniesta, and join a less intense league either in the United States or Asia. This would obviously be the player’s decision as he would take his option if he no longer feels that he could physically keep up with the players around him.

For now it seems Frankie de Jong is filling Busquets shoes when the latter is unavailable. With the match against a Segunda Division B team, it seems like a good time test out the new trio that could very well be the future of a new Barca under the Setien era, while we wait and see how Puig attempts to impress the new manager.

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Would you like this trio to take over the Nou Camp?