I’m not sure I understand the furore that has erupted amongst the cule fraternity over the potential capture of Adrien Rabiot from Paris Saint-Germain.
A player who is still a long way from his peak years but who is world class in his position already, who will give Barcelona strength and depth where they need it most and who will potentially arrive on a free... and people are still complaining?!
It appears that a lot of their ire is down to a misguided belief that the 23-year-old is a troublemaker.
Firstly, in order to push through a move that he clearly wants, he’s had to do the same as Ousmane Dembele at Borussia Dortmund and dig his heels in. It was obvious that such a stance would upset PSG, but it’s no worse than many other players have had to do to engineer a move away, and on their terms.
[MARCA] | The arrival of Rabiot does not mean that Barça will abandon signing De Jong— BarçaTimes (@BarcaTimes) December 24, 2018
Barça wants both players because they feel they will improve the midfield from the likes of Samper, Denis and Rafinha
Both players want to join, which makes it easier for the club pic.twitter.com/CHXcT0pe59
Letting your contract run down still isn’t a crime as far as I’m aware.
As to the ‘massive mistake’ he made according to France coach, Didier Deschamps, when withdrawing from the French World Cup squad after not being placed in the final 23... since when has ambition been a crime too?
For balance, yes, he could’ve handled the latter situation differently, but he’s still a young man and he is allowed to make mistakes.
Barcelona will ensure that the midfielder toes the line in much the same way as they have with Dembele, though I would imagine that the adaptation process won’t be as fraught as many suspect.
Even Xavi recognised in an interview with Mundo Deportivo that Rabiot “could play perfectly as a midfielder at Barcelona.”
As someone who has watched him on a regular enough basis to form an accurate opinion on what he brings to the club, I agree with Xavi.
Rabiot, if you recall, was one of the main reasons why the Blaugranes were humbled 4-0 at the Parc des Princes in the not too distant past.
Other players garnered the headlines, but he was as important as any.
Though he’s tall and physical, which isn’t often a description used for Barcelona’s midfielders, his in-game intelligence and his accuracy in the pass place him deservedly alongside his Camp Nou contemporaries.
As adept at breaking up play and doing the dirty work as he is marauding forward and offering himself as a presence in attack, Rabiot can give Ernesto Valverde the luxury of resting either Sergio Busquets or Ivan Rakitic when needed.
Though Arturo Vidal could arguably do similar if asked, the Chilean is getting no younger.
Anyone keen to espouse the theory that he’s not a ‘Barca type player,’ only needs to look back at what Paulinho and Vidal have provided over the last two seasons to understand that they’ll probably be eating humble pie for a third time if Rabiot puts pen to paper.
It’s a no brainer.