Riqui Puig is not ready to leave FC Barcelona and will fight for minutes, according to the latest rumors from Catalonia. The young player has been linked with a loan move away from the Camp Nou. This, because manager Ronald Koeman is said to not be confident Puig would have many minutes should he remain in Barcelona.
The player was left out of Barcelona’s squad for the Joan Gamper Trophy match against Elche, prompting rumors that he could be loaned or even sold.
There was apparently a meeting between the player’s agent and father, Carlos, and the club. In that meeting, he reportedly told people his son was prepared to stay and fight for a place in the XI.
Part of the reason for Puig’s troubles now, after he was able to become a part of the regular rotation last season, is the change in formation.
With a 4-2-3-1 formation, Koeman has moved Lionel Messi from the right wing to the central attacking midfielder spot. That would be Puig’s natural spot. In addition, two world famous names could be options in the same position: Philippe Coutinho and Antoine Griezmann, although they are likely to feature elsewhere if Messi plays the lion’s share of minutes there.
Puig could be used as part of the double pivot, although he is somewhat less suited there. However, there is competition for that spot as well, from the likes of Frenkie de Jong, Sergio Busquets, and Miralem Pjanić, to name a few.