Report: Martin Montoya entered his first season as an official member of the first team expecting to be immediately behind Dani Alves on the depth chart. But reality was a bit different as Tito Vilanova rated Adriano Correia higher than the young full-back. But throughout the season Montoya showed that such rating was probably unfair.
In the beginning Montoya was actually thrown into the deep end of the pool, coming on the pitch in the second leg of the Supercopa El Clasico after Adriano was sent off. The young man performed admirably, not being overwhelmed by Cristiano Ronaldo. He actually would've become an instant hero of Barça fans had it not been for a good save by Iker Casillas on Montoya's stoppage-time shot that would've won Barcelona the trophy.
Montoya only made one appearance before he was once again called upon against Real Madrid, this time in the league, when he replaced Alves after 28 minutes. Like in his first El Clasico appearance he was solid defensively, but once again he lacked a little bit of luck offensively. With the score tied at two, in the 88th minute, Montoya curled a shot from the edge of box, but was denied by the crossbar.
In December, when Alves began regaining his form, playing time was extremely difficult to come by for Montoya. He actually only made five appearances at his natural position, right-back, since 1 December, and all but one were in meaningless games - the Copa del Rey quarter-final game against Malaga.
During that same time-frame Montoya appeared in the same amount of games at left-back, a position he was largely unfamiliar with until this season. It was noticeable that he wasn't as comfortable there as he was on the right side, however, he didn't make any noteworthy mistakes. However, Montoya was less involved in the attacking phase of the game when playing on the left side than compared with the right.
On the international level Montoya exclusively appeared with the Spain U-21 team, where he took part in seven games - all at right-back - during which he helped his team with two assists. Montoya was also a key member of the team that retained the U-21 European Championship. In December Montoya was on the cusp of making his senior team debut in a friendly against Panama, but Vicente del Bosque chose to leave him on the bench.
Moment of the season: When a player scores his first La Liga of his football career picking the moment of the season is a no-brainer. Especially when the player scores a goal that looks like the one Montoya scored. In the very last game of the season the young full-back fired a rocket from outside of the penalty box and beat Willy Caballero to the far post.
Montoya goal vs Malaga (via Shweb00786)
|Started on the Bench
|Shots on Goal
|BB Community Rating*||6.52|
*BB Community Rating represents the average rating (out of 10) Barca Blaugranes community members gave to the player for his performances throughout the season
Record with Martin Montoya in the starting lineup: 13-4-0
2013-14 Outlook: Montoya is expected easily hold off Adriano for the primary backup spot at right-back, but the situation will be reversed on the left side where Montoya will be third on the depth chart. With Alves on the wrong side of 30 Montoya should get more playing time than he did this season.
Next Up: Marc Bartra