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Dembele injury offers Deulofeu big Barcelona chance

But will he take it?

Barcelona v Real Betis - La Liga Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

News of Ousmane Dembele’s injury has come as a big shock to Barcelona as the forward faces surgery and a spell of upto four months on the sidelines.

If the initial fears prove true then we will not see Dembele in a Barcelona shirt again in 2017, a huge shame for both the club and the player.

Barca have another 19 fixtures scheduled between now and the turn of the year, which Dembele is expected to miss, leaving Ernesto Valverde in need of a replacement.

It also hands players a huge opportunity to try and stake a claim in the Barcelona attack, and none more so than Gerard Deulofeu.

Deulofeu is the obvious choice to directly replace Dembele, as shown on Saturday when he came on for the Frenchman after he hobbled off against Getafe.

The youngster was extremely highly-rated as he came through La Masia but his career has not reached the heights that were initially expected when he was a teenager.

When he returned to Barcelona this summer Deulofeu spoke of his delight at finally getting a chance to play in the first team, how he had been “waiting for his chance for years.”

The arrival of Dembele seemed to put Deulofeu back on the sidelines, but his bad luck now gives the former Everton man a huge chance, and it’s really time he grabbed it with both hands.

Deulofeu has already made six appearances for Barca in all competitions this season, is yet to score and has one assist and those stats will need to seriously improve if he is to become first choice.

Obviously Valverde does have other options, he could bring in Paco Alcacer, Aleix Vidal, Denis Suarez or even Arda Turan - but Deulofeu is the obvious choice a the moment.

He probably will not get a better chance to make his mark this season, it’s time he grabbed it with both hands.

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