Barcelona striker Martin Braithwaite is well on course to prove his doubters wrong this season and seems to have struck a chord with Henrik Larsson.
According to CaughtOffside, the Dane has managed to impress the former Barcelona striker and current assistant coach with his efforts both in training and on the pitch. Braithwaite has earned a first-team place this season and has averaged a goal every three games so far for the Blaugrana.
The Danish striker was brought to Barcelona under extraordinary circumstances last season. After the long-term injury to Ousmane Dembele, the Catalans were allowed to sign a replacement despite the transfer window being closed. The La Liga giants triggered Braithwaite’s €18m release clause to secure his services. The Dane finished with one goal from 11 appearances last season for the Catalans and has five from 17 this term. And having already managed to keep Antoine Griezmann out of the first 11, Braithwaite also seems to have impressed Larsson.
The former Barcelona striker, who enjoyed a prolific career, sees a shadow of himself in the Dane. Larsson is delighted with Braithwaite’s work ethic on the pitch, be it in training or during games. The Swede even believes that the Dane is blessed with the same traits that helped him succeed.
When Luis Suarez was allowed to leave Barcelona in the summer, few people expected Braithwaite to step up and fill the void left behind. While the Dane has a long way to go to match the Uruguayan, his work ethic, desire to succeed and selflessness on the pitch have ensured that he is still a part of the club’s plans.
Braithwaite has become a constant feature in the Barcelona team this season
Braithwaite started his first seven La Liga games of this season on the bench, coming on as a substitute five times to play a total of 44 minutes. Incidentally, Barcelona won just two of those seven games. His first start of the season came in the UEFA Champions League, against Dynamo Kyiv, where he scored two and set up one to secure a memorable win. That earned him his first start in the league, against Osasuna five days later, where he found the back of the net once again.
Since then, the Dane has been a constant feature of the Barcelona starting eleven. Interestingly, in his eight consecutive starts in the league so far, the Catalans have won five and lost just once.
Published 05 Jan 2021, 20:19 IST