Barcelona‘s defensive crisis has deepened with news that right-back Sergino Dest is a doubt for Sunday’s La Liga clash against Osasuna at the Camp Nou.
The right-back has a muscular issue and may be forced to sit out the match. If the 20-year-old is sidelined then manager Ronald Koeman could use Oscar Mingueza on the right side of his defense, according to Catalunya Radio.
Mingueza only made his Barcelona debut on Tuesday in Barca’s 4-0 Champions League win over Dynamo Kiev. The 21-year-old is yet to feature for Barcelona in La Liga but could now be set to retain his place in the starting XI.
Dest’s injury would leave Koeman seriously short of options at the back. He’s already without center-backs Gerard Pique, Samuel Umtiti, and Ronald Araujo due to injury, while the versatile Sergi Roberto has also been ruled out for two months.
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How Could Barcelona Line Up?
Barcelona’s defensive injuries could see Koeman name an unfamiliar back four with Mingueza and Jordi Alba as his two full-backs. Frenkie de Jong may then be needed to partner Clement Lenglet at center-back.
De Jong is primarily a midfielder but has played in the role for the Netherlands and former club Ajax. He’s already played in defense for Barca this season and should be fresh after being rested in midweek along with captain Lionel Messi.
Yet moving De Jong into defense would leave Koeman with a position to fill in his midfield double pivot system. Miralem Pjanic and Carles Alena took on the job against Dynamo Kiev and could continue, while Sergio Busquets has been back in full training this week and may also be passed fit for the match.
Blow for Dest
If Dest does miss out it will be a blow to the young American who was back in the starting XI in midweek after losing his spot to Roberto. The 20-year-old impressed in the match and even scored his first goal for his new club.
— Champions League on CBS Sports (@UCLonCBSSports) November 24, 2020
The right-back spoke after the match to the club’s media about how much he was looking forward to getting back out on the pitch.
I’m very happy to score my first goal. I think overall we played good as a team, everybody played good and we took the win. We have two more games to go but we are in a good position right now. I am very happy we won and I can’t wait until we play the next game. I am really happy to score my first goal. I think we needed a goal, it was an important one to make it 1-0 and hopefully many more to come.
Dest looks to have a bright future at the club and will be keen to get back to La Liga action and pick up his first win for Barcelona in Spain’s top flight. The USMNT star has made five appearances in Spain’s top flight in 2020-21 but is yet to finish on the winning side.