5 replacements for Andres Iniesta at Barcelona
Andres Iniesta's 22-year association with the club came to a close with his last match at home against Sociedad. A spectacular farewell followed. As the curtains close on a magnificent career, it is time for the board to get proactive in the transfer market, to secure a replacement for the magician.
While the deal for Arthur is all but done, and another deal in principle for Antoine Griezmann, Barcelona need someone who can control and run the show from the middle of the park, just the way Iniesta did.
It is not going to be easy to replace arguably the best midfielder to have graced the pitch but it surely needs to be done if Barcelona are to challenge for silverware post the Iniesta era. With the World Cup in June, a lot of the players will come to the attention of the club. Here are a few of the options whom they should target in the upcoming transfer window:
#5 Anthony Martial
An out and out winger to replace a creative midfielder you ask?
Barcelona lost Neymar this summer and replaced him with Ousmane Dembele and Coutinho. But the problem is, Dembele is at his lethal best when played on the right wing and Coutinho, for his skillset, should be utilized as a left-sided midfielder in a 3-man midfield, basically replacing Andres Iniesta.
That leaves a spot open on the left wing, where Martial would seamlessly fit in. He has struggled for playing time under Jose Mourinho and rumours of a rift between the two have picked up pace of late. Reports suggest that Martial has rejected a new contract at United and is keen to move on. The French forward has endured a tough time ever since his big-money move from AS Monaco and things have gone from bad to worse for the 22-year old when he was left out of the French squad for the World cup.
His talent is unquestionable and he has always performed whenever he has been called upon. He is quick on his feet, possesses immaculate control and has shown the maturity to take the right decisions in front of goal, which makes him a fantastic option for Barcelona.
While he may not be the most ideal Iniesta replacement, he could compensate for the Spaniard's absence with his skillset, allowing Coutinho to take up the midfield role.