Lionel Messi’s contract situation at Paris Saint-Germain has allowed Barcelona fans to dream of an emotional return in the summer. The club hierarchy has suggested doors are always open for their former jewel, and Sergio Aguero feels there’s a 50 percent chance his friend ends up at Camp Nou at the end of the season. Anything is possible at this stage of the season.
However, as far as Álex Grimaldo, another ex-Barca player, is concerned, fans shouldn’t hold their breath on his potential return.
Early on Sunday, a report from Portugal suggested Barcelona are in advanced talks with the Benfica left-back. The Spaniard, who left Barcelona B for the Portuguese club, will be out of contract this summer.
The suggestion of the former club talent’s return, especially on a free transfer, naturally excited the fans. But within a few hours, Fabrizio Romano refuted the claims.
Barcelona not working on signing former player, Fabrizio Romano claims
The Italian journalist tweeted that the Blaugrana are not working on Grimaldo’s signing at the moment.
The in-form Benfica left-back is attracting interest from ‘many clubs’, but Barcelona are not looking to address the position. Xavi is blessed with the likes of Jordi Alba, Marcos Alonso, and Alejandro Balde to cover the left side of his side’s defence.
Balde, in particular, has been impressive this season. The academy graduate was phenomenal against Manchester United and Real Madrid, winning the penalty for Robert Lewandowski’s goal in the Europa League and assisting Franck Kessié’s winner in El Clasico before the international break. He was also lauded by fans for his performance in Spain’s 3-0 win over Norway over the weekend.
What Barcelona need is a new right-back, someone who can be as influential as Balde going forward. Ronald Araújo, Jules Kounde, and Sergio Roberto have been used by Xavi this term to man the right-back slot, to mixed results.