Ever since Lionel Messi tried to leave the club last summer, Barcelona fans and board has been wondering who could ever replace the mercurial superstar. The Argentine is a forever club legend and is probably the most naturally talented player of all time. Replacing a person like Messi is no small task and for a while, no one really knew what would happen. Thankfully Messi did not leave that season, as they would really have no one to fill up the spot had he left the club. However, the Catalans were unable to keep him this season and it seems like the fans have all pinned the pressure on youngster Ansu Fati’s shoulders.
This is a really tough spot for the 18-year-old. On one hand, he definitely has the potential to be on Messi’s level one day, but on the other hand, too much expectation from the fans and the media could ruin his career before it even begins. He is not the same type of a player as Messi, as he is a more physical and traditional goalscorer. No one can be like Messi and Fati admits that he is finding his own way. It was Fati’s lone goal against Dynamo Kyiv that got Barca the win; however, the club cannot depend on him as they depended upon Messi.
Right now is the time for a complete rebuild to make Barcelona a proper functioning team again. With Xavi Hernandez on the way, it is time for the Catalans to build up their chemistry and show the world the true potential of their youngsters.
Players such as Pedri, Riqui Puig, Ilaix Moriba, Alex Collado, etc, all have tremendous potential and thus there is no need to rely on just one person. The sooner the team learns to play as a fully organized entity, the better. Xavi will bring in a lot of tactics from Pep Guardiola and if the team can keep up with the pressure and intensity, they can soon become one of the best in European football again.