Ronald Koeman reveals why he doesn’t play Riqui Puig

Riqui Puig of FC Barcelona B (Photo by Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Riqui Puig of FC Barcelona B (Photo by Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Fans were struggling to understand why Koeman omits Riqui Puig.

Ronald Koeman and Riqui Puig got off to a less than ideal start when the Dutch manager wanted to loan off the young midfielder. When Koeman was appointed as the new manager of football club Barcelona, there was an exodus of older players such as Arturo Vidal, Ivan Rakitic, and most notably Luis Suarez. Apart from these older players, the manager also wanted to get rid of academy graduate Riqui Puig.

More from Everything Barca

The new manager, in a public interview, said that Puig is a young talent who needs regular game time in order to fulfill his potential. However, he also said that the amount of on-field time that the player needs, Barcelona cannot provide. Koeman suggested that the Spaniard should go on a loan to a smaller club but in reality, he was subtly hinting at his exit.

It is no secret that the Catalans are going through a rather tough financial phase and the sale of the talented youngster would have allowed Koeman to bring in a few players of his choice. However, Puig wanted to stay and fight for his place in the club even though the manager told him he does not have plans for him.

Since then, however, things have not changed and Puig has barely played any matches and has clocked in only 77 minutes of game time in all competitions. When asked about the situation, Koeman said that his lack of training is also a factor to his lack of game time.

In an interview Koeman was asked as to why young defender, Ronald Araujo was getting game time but not him, he replied,

"“Maybe Riqui needs to be more physical, but I like players that try to improve every day and take their chances to improve with both hands. In that position (midfield) there is a lot of competition, but maybe in training he doesn’t do enough to make the coach change his way of thinking. These days it’s not just about quality, you need many other things, too.”Source Sport"

Things are not looking good for the midfielder who might start to contemplate about other clubs. However, it would be a loss for the Spanish side as the player is still very young and had shown some great performances last season. Koeman should give him a chance although if the rumors about his training ethics are true, Puig should fix that work harder to get into the squad.

Next. Barcelona Director of Football target, Jordi Cruyff, has multiple options. dark

Do you believe Puig doesn’t do enough in training?