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5 Ligue 1 stars who would make Barcelona a better team

Robin Bairner
Top 5 / Top 10
9.55K   //    23 Oct 2017, 19:00 IST

Barcelona v Espanyol - La Liga
Dembele rose to prominence at Dortmund but broke onto the scene ar Rennes

Barcelona have a long history of looking to France for their playing talent. As early as 1902, Rene Victor Fernouillere became the first Frenchman to pull on the club’s famous shirt and since then numerous have followed.

Over recent years, the appeal to looking at Ligue 1 has grown, with Le Championnat the outstanding breeding ground for producing young talent in Europe – both those of French birth but also those of foreign extraction.

Ousmane Dembele, Samuel Umtiti and Lucas Digne are all currently defending the club’s colours having come through the ranks in France, for example.

Here are five more stars who Barcelona would be well served to look at in the coming months.

#5 Joris Gnagnon (Rennes)

Although Barcelona are largely associated with exciting, attacking football, they need defenders, too, and Rennes star Joris Gnagnon is a hugely promising player at centre-back. He is only 20, but already has a wealth of experience under his belt in Ligue 1, having played nearly 50 times in the top flight already.

After initially breaking into the team due to injuries and selection problems, Gnagnon has established himself as a regular member of Christian Gourcuff’s starting XI and is a capable player in possession – just as Barcelona demand. He is already treated as a leader and is a young man with the potential to go all the way to the top.

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Robin Bairner
UK-based freelance football journalist for the last decade, I've appeared in publications such as the Guardian, the Blizzard, When Saturday Comes, but can most frequently be found on I write about European football, and have worked at both World Cup 2014 and Euro 2016.
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