Positions that need reinforcing at Barcelona to guarantee success
On the back of a dull summer transfer window, Barcelona were not expected to lead the way. However, Valverde had other plans in mind, taking Barcelona to an impressive unbeaten run in all competitions to-date. Known for his shrewd planning, Valverde chose to tread carefully throughout the season without rushing his ideas on the pitch.
At the beginning of the season, Valverde went back to basics with a shift to the famous 4-3-3 formation positioning Messi in his favoured False Nine role upfront. We saw Suarez moving to the left wing in a role, similar to that of David Villa's during his time with Barcelona. Meanwhile, Dembele became the traditional winger on the right-hand-side of the pitch. As weeks went by, Suarez showed signs of weaknesses since his form didn't allow him to make constant runs behind the defence the way a second striker should whenever Messi drops deep.
With Dembele injured and Barcelona's midfield unable to dictate play, Valverde found himself obliged to move into pragmatism in order to avoid losing points early in the season. The former Athletic Bilbao boss is an admirer of the 4-3-3 but knows that without the right personnel, it can't be implemented.
In this slideshow, my intent is to identify the 5 positions Barcelona's board must reinforce for Valverde's 4-3-3 formation to work perfectly .
#1 Prolific Winger
Doesn't matter if he'll play on the right or on the left - Dembele's ambidexterity makes him suitable for both wings, giving room for the new player to start in his favoured position. With two wingers in the frontline stretching the opposition's defence, Messi will be granted the space he thrives in; between the lines.
There's no doubt concerning Suarez's goal-scoring ability. However, with a prolific winger, Barcelona will have another dimension to their attack in case the Uruguayan has a bad day. The winger playing in a 4-3-3 must be fast when running behind defences and able to capitalise on Messi's creativity.