Barca have lost and haven’t qualified through to the finals of the UEFA Champions League. We have literally lost the La Liga over our arch rivals Real Madrid. Journalists all around the world are spreading the rumour that its over for Barcelona era’s and Pep Guardiola’s time as coach. So what do we do now for the rest of the season?
Well there is still one more trophy that Barca can win this season. Yes, the Copa Del Rey. Though some say its unimportant and worthless, in my opinion, Barcelona will want to win this badly because of an achievement for this season and hopefully make Pep Guardiola sign another year’s deal with the club. So who are going to be the starters? Well if you have a look at some of the previous few CDR’s games Barca have played, you see that in goals Victor Valdes does not start. Instead, you have 36 year old Jose Pinto who recently has signed a new contract with Barcelona. Saying this, Jose Pinto hasn’t started in goals since January and well with the lack of game experience, the guy may stuff up a few opportunities and may cost us the game. Well, what do we do? Pep Guardiola should start him a few games before this event and allow improvement and confidence to grow before the ‘big game’. Victor Valdes is one card away from suspension so a yellow card for him in the next game or so will allow Pinto to get a chance to get the feel of the ball and prove to his coach he is worthy to still keep.
Saying that, before this ‘big match’, Barca has four more matches to play in the league. Who should we start? Well everyone can confidently say that Messi needs a rest. This guy has played too many minutes on the pitch in such a short amount of time. Let’s hope Fabregas or Sanchez can fit into his shoes well enough and produce a decent performance. Xavi needs a rest and well in my opinion he neds two games of rest as we don’t want his slight injury to turn into a major injury. Thiago for me isn’t the best replacement or Fabregas in that matter but one or both of these players will soon enough have to fill in Xavi’s boots as he will not always be with Barca. Carles Puyol, the captain also has had too many games that he has had to play for Barca with the injury to Gerard Pique and also looks to be rested. Javier Mascherano may replace him in CB though he too looks like he needs a rest. If Pep thinks it’s necessary then he should call up Marc Barta or Marc Muniesa (who have been recently been promoted to Barca from the B team for next season) to have a little experience before playing games next season. Saying that I can expect Pep to play his promoted players (Barta, Muniesa, Martin Montoya and Jonathan Dos Santos) in the last 2 games as he did last season to see what talent that can produce.
For 2 weeks, Ibrahim Afellay has been given the medical green light, indicating that he is fit to play with the Barca side again. I find it discomforting that Ibi hasn’t been selected in the squad for games against Levante, Chelsea leg’s and the El Clasico but I’m sure Pep will soon enough play him as he loves him as much as his love towards players like Seydou Kieta and of course Cesc Fabregas. His speedy pace will be useful against the weaker sides and his work rate both on and off the ball is incredible.
What do you think? Should Pep give his older players a rest and give a go for the younger ones?