Marc Cucurella is a B-teamer currently on loan to Eibar. Reports suggest that Eibar want to sign the wing-back on a permanent basis while Barca intend to exercise his buy back clause and then sell him or a higher price(around 8-10 mil, as per reports). Here is my view on what we should do with the Spaniard this summer.
Age- 20 years (21 this July)
Appearances this season-31
Yellow cards/Red cards-5/0
(Stats from Transfermarket)
Cucurella has so far had an average season with Eibar, with encouraging performances again top oppositions.
He scored against Barca this weekend, but the highlight of this season for him is undoubtedly, his performance that led to a 3-0 victory for Eibar against Real AWAY FROM HOME.
Overall, Cucurella doesn't specialize in one particular aspect. He doesn't possess lightning quick pace, pin-point crossing or bullish defensive abilities. He is however, hard-working, and knows the Barca way of football.
Can we keep Cucurella?
In one of my previous articles, I had recommended Nicolas Tagliafico as our back up lb for next season. It just occupied to me that the current Ajax lb is Argentine, and will take up a non-EU spot. It is not sensible for a rotation piece to take up 1 of our 3 spots, and that might give us better incentive to hunt for local talent.
There are also reports that Jordi Alba is blocking the signing of a new lb. Well, this is, in the loosest of definitions, a loophole against his wishes, for we are technically not signing a new player.
I do believe that Cucurella can stay at Barca, and compete with Juan Miranda(who suddenly lost EV's faith) to take up the lb position 3 years in the future.
Is Cucurella good enough for local competitions?
In my previous article, I had suggested that our new back up lb plays around 22 games in La Liga, as well as sharing time with Miran in the Copa del Rey. Imo, Cucurella should be ideal for such a role.Given his one year experience for a mid-table team, Cucurella can fit im well to our second-string line ups as well.
Can Cucurella play in the UCL?
Lets be honest, no. Playing in the La Liga is vastly different, and Cucu can only play in MD6, by when we usually seal top spot.
What if Jordi Alba is injured for the UCL?
In a scenario where Alba is injured/suspended, it would be ideal to switch to a 3 man defence. Cucu can start as lb or on the bench based in his form and confidence. Ideally, the line up would be something like-
De Ligt -Pique/Lenglet-Umtiti
Semedo-Raki/FDJ- Busi/Arthur -Malcom
How will Cucurella fit in?
As I mentioned, Cucurella can play lb to give a Alba a breather. Another scenario is Cucurella playing lm. Personally, I would not play him in the left hand side of a 4-2-3-1, owing to his limited attacking productivity. However, it is a possibility in dead rubber matches, with Miranda as lb as well.
Another position he could be deployed in is the lwb of a 3-5-2. This would be interesting to watch in the game imo. Something like-
What are possible problems with Cucurella?
Cucurella promised to celebrate if he scored against Barca at the Camp Nou,and fulfilled the promise this Sunday. Although the celebration might have been purely targeting the board, it does leave a bad taste in the mouth, and makes me wonder if he knows something about his future that we don't.
Another issue was in the present-season tour, where he complained about the lack of first team opportunities, before jumping ship, while Miranda admitted to not being ready yet.
This might lead to friction in the dressing room, as a mentioned in my other article.
What do you guys think about Cucurella? Let me know in the comments.