When Barcelona signed three players in the winter transfer window, they overlooked one detail that is now going to severely affect their season. The Catalans were having a tough time registering all the new players because they had to maintain the salary cap which has been dealt by La Liga. While the club has miraculously managed to register all three signings as well as Dani Alves for their League games, the rules for Europa League only allows three new signings after the group stage. This would have been okay for the team had they managed to register Dani Alves in that competition beforehand however, with the three new signings plus Dani Alves not being registered, they had a new problem on their hands.
Barca knew that in order to continue in the Europa League tournament, they would have to leave one player behind. Among their new transfers, Adama Traore, Ferran Torres and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, only Traore could have been potentially left out. Alves was also extremely important due to the fact that Xavi Hernandez does not prefer Sergino Dest however, it seems as if the decision has been made. The club released the list of players they had registered for the tournament and Alves was the one who was left out. It seemed as if the manager could not play with the legendary right-back but due to unforeseen circumstances, he will be forced to play with Dest.
It will not be a complete loss, however, as now Dest has the chance to potentially show his true self to the manager and cement his role within the first team. The American is a great player however, he is not being able to settle down with the team. He was extremely important when Ronald Koeman was around however, he could never really replicate the form he had back at Ajax. Now he has been given a second opportunity and if he manages to impress the boss, who knows, maybe he will be the one who will replace Alves for good.
Can Dest help mitigate Alves’ absence?