Barcelona had a chance to sign David Alaba. It went out the window after he made a request.
According to a report from Mundo Deportivo, the Catalan giants contacted the Bayern Munich full-back back in January in hopes to find out if the Austrian was willing to join. Barça wanted to know about Alaba's wish before even approaching Bayern for a potential negotiations, and they reached out to the player to find out where he was.
They heard a positive response from the 23-year-old, who said he had interest of joining the world's best team this summer. However, he had one clear condition: a midfield role. Alaba is primarily a full-back at Bayern, although Pep Guardiola has used him as a central defender in several instances this season, but he wants to play further up the pitch as a midfielder, similar to his position in the Austrian national team. The position change, in the Alaba's mind, would help his development and evolution as a footballer, which is scary considering he's one of the best players on the planet.
Alaba was one of Barça's biggest targets for the summer, as coach Luis Enrique loves his versatility and could use him in the middle of the defense or in Jordi Alba's place on the flank. However, Alaba's demand was clear: the only way he can leave Bayern is a guaranteed position as a midfielder in his new team, something Barça can't offer. In fact, he wants to play in midfield with new Bayern manager Carlo Ancelotti starting next season, and the Italian appears to be on board with the move.
David Alaba could have been a Barça player. The problem is he didn't want to be in a position Barça really needs.