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Ranking the players of Barcelona B team

  • We rank the players of Barcelona's reserve team in order of their talent, potential and chances of making it to the first team.
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Modified 17 Apr 2017, 19:01 IST
BERLIN, GERMANY - JUNE 06: Xavi Hernandez (L) and Andres Iniesta of Barcelona celebrate with the trophy after the UEFA Champions League Final between Juventus and FC Barcelona at Olympiastadion on June 6, 2015 in Berlin, Germany.  (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)
Xavi Hernandez (left) and Andres Iniesta (right) are some of the best players to come through Barcelona’s system

The Barcelona B team is the reserve team of FC Barcelona and in Spain and plays in a league system similar to the first team albeit at least a division lower. This is different from the rules in England where the reserve teams have a separate league of their own. Further, these Spanish reserve teams cannot play in the Copa del Rey as well.

The Barcelona B team is one of the most famous teams as it has been the home of the finest prospects of La Masia, the famed academy of Barcelona. Players step up through the academy ranks and make a name here before getting a call into the first team. Players such as Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernandez, Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets have come through the system.

In recent times, not many players are being seen transitioning to the first team with a lot of emphasis on short-term fixes and success. This is in contrast to the scenario from five-six years back when the squad was comprised of several players who have come through the ranks.

This has led to a reduction in importance of the B team but nevertheless, the talent pool which Barcelona has cannot cease all at once and their B team still buzzes with talent. Currently playing in the Spanish third division, Barcelona B has a number of players both from La Masia and also from transfers abroad.

So, here they are ranked in order of their current talent and potential.

#24 Alberto Varo Lara

The 23-year old goalkeeper was brought in on loan from Gimnastic de Tarragona as a back-up for the main keeper due to his ability with the ball at his feet. Sharing a surname with a legendary cricketer in Brian Lara, Alberto is very likely not a future prospect for the club and is expected to return to his home club once the season ends.

#23 Seung-Ho Paik

The South Korean joined the club in 2009 and is a versatile midfielder who can play through the middle as well as on either flank. The 20-year old Paik came through the ranks before making his Barcelona B team debut in the 2015/16 season.

Currently, Paik is a full squad member of the Barcelona B team but needs to play more in order to have a future at the club.

#22 Borja López Menéndez

MADRID, SPAIN - MARCH 29:  Cristiano Ronaldo (R) of Real Madrid FC is tackled by Borja Lopez of Rayo Vallecano de Madrid during the La Liga match between Real Madrid CF and Rayo Vallecano de Madrid at Santiago Bernabeu stadium on March 29, 2014 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
Borja Lopez (in red and black) tackling Cristiano Ronaldo while playing for Rayo Vallecano

Borja Lopez started in the Sporting Gijon academy and went on to play for the first team as well before moving on to French side AS Monaco. He had various loan spells at Rayo Vallecano, Deportivo La Coruna and Arouca before signing with Barcelona.

A tall, strong defender who is good with the ball at his feet, the 23-year old might be a little too old to have a crack at the first team especially with Samuel Umtiti making a stellar start to his Barcelona career.

#21 José Antonio Martínez Gil

The 23-year old defender joined from Sevilla in the summer and travelled with the first team for the pre-season as well. A tall, left-footed defender Martinez was a key part of Sevilla B team’s promotion to Second Division A in the 2015/16 season.

When his contract expired, he chose to sign for Barcelona instead of renewing his contract, as he is a childhood Barcelona fan. A tough defender who is excellent in the air, Martinez will find it difficult to break into the first team anytime soon due to the players ahead of him.

#20 Alberto Perea Correoso

MADRID, SPAIN - AUGUST 19:  Alberto Perea of Rayo Vallecano de Madrid celebrates scoring their second goal with teammates during the La Liga match between Rayo Vallecano de Madrid and Elche FC at Estadio Teresa Rivero on August 19, 2013 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
Alberto Perea during his Rayo Vallecano days.

The oldest player at 26 years of age in the Barcelona B team, Perea provides width and pace playing as a right winger. He loves to cut inside and can play up front as well making him a versatile option.

The Spaniard played for Rayo Vallecano in La Liga as well and was signed last year, providing much-required experience and has scored nine goals so far this season for the B team. Since he has been brought in for the B team alone and considering his age, one can expect him not to be part of the first team plans at any point of time.

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Published 17 Apr 2017, 17:24 IST
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