New Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman is busy firming up his plans for the new La Liga season and has decided four more players are surplus to requirements at the Camp Nou.
Koeman has already told striker Luis Suarez to look for a new club. The Dutchman spoke to the 33-year-old on the phone in a call that lasted “less than a minute” and left the Uruguayan upset with the way he’s been treated.
The new Barcelona boss has also come to the conclusion that Samuel Umtiti, Ivan Rakitic, Arturo Vidal, and Junior Firpo are also not in his plans for next season, according to Luis Miguelsanz at Sport.
Rakitic and Umtiti already knew they were not part of the club’s future. The midfielder is keen to return to former club Sevilla, while Umtiti could head to Italy on loan.
Meanwhile, Juventus, Inter, and Paris Saint-Germain have all expressed an interest in Vidal, and Junior has been valued at around €20 million and could also head to Serie A.
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Alba, Busquets and Pique to Continue
Although Koeman appears willing to offload the club’s aging stars, he is not ready to shift all of Barca’s veterans. The new boss has spoken to 31-year-old full-back Jordi Alba and told him he remains an important member of the squad, according to German Bona at Sport.
Gabriel Sans at Mundo Deportivo reports that Sergio Busquets and Sergi Roberto have not spoken to Koeman yet but are also set to continue at the Camp Nou.
Center-back Gerard Pique, who offered to step down in the wake of Barcelona’s 8-2 defeat to Bayern, will also remain at the club and remain a crucial part of the defense, according to Cadena SER.
Koeman to Look to Youth?
The changes Koeman is implementing suggests the Dutchman will look to youth for next season, and he has plenty of options at his disposal. Youngsters Ronald Araujo, Riqui Puig, and Ansu Fati are expected to be officially promoted to the first team for 2020-21.
New signings Pedri and Francisco Trincao are also currently in pre-season training with Barcelona and will be hoping to make an early impression on their new boss.
Pedri has already caught the eye at international level and been named in the Spain Under-21 squad, while Trincao has received his first call-up for Portugal.
Koeman is also being tipped to make tactical changes at the Camp Nou. The 57-year-old is planning on using a double pivot system and could tweak his formation from 4-3-3 to a 4-2-3-1.