Chelsea’s £13m January sale can benefit Thomas Tuchel and fulfil another Xavi Barcelona wish – Anita Abayomi
Barcelona had taken our Champions League dreams away from us back in 2009. Now they want to take away our left-back.
Since the arrival of their new manager, Xavi, Barcelona have made instant changes. Bringing back Dani Alves was the first thing on Xavi’s agenda, and now it seems that Marcos Alonso is on his shopping list to challenge Jordi Alba at left-back.
With Ben Chilwell being Thomas Tuchel’s first choice left wingback at the moment, Marcos Alonso will be considering all options to retain his position in the Spain national team. The question is, can we afford to let Alonso go bearing in mind the scarcity of contract renewals in our defence overall?
As reported by Mundo Deportivo, Barcelona has identified Chelsea’s Marcos Alonso as a potential target. It’s probably destiny for the Spaniard to return to Spain and see out the rest of his career. To be quite honest with you, I certainly wouldn’t protest against the move.
Alonso has revived his Chelsea reputation under Tuchel in recent times. His time at Chelsea has gone from two extremes. Starting off as a world-class wingback under Antonio Conte, to one of the most frustrating left-back options that I have ever witnessed.
His quality in the final third is unquestionable, however, when it’s time to track back and make those all-important defensive strides, I’d rather not speak about it. He is more of a specialist player in my eyes. Where he excels as a wingback he also fails to meet basic defensive requirements at times and that’s where it becomes frustrating.
Could it be that Alonso may benefit from playing in a slower league? The pace of the Premier League can render any world-class player less effective, it is the hardest league to play in. He needs more time off the ball than he does on the ball. Alonso can potentially find his best form in La Liga where he will have more time for defensive recovery and more time for his decision-making.
Barcelona currently sit in 9th place in La Liga, 11 points behind league leaders Real Sociedad. Xavi has been appointed to get the club back to winning ways and as a serial winner, Alonso will be able to play a massive part in this project.
He is good enough to challenge Jordi Alba and potentially steal his starting spot. Or it could give Alba the Luke Shaw effect. Having a threatening backup would put Alba in a hot seat and will likely bring out the best in him. Not only will this benefit Barcelona, but it will also benefit the Spain national team.
Jose Gaya has been favoured for the left-back position so far this season for Spain, replacing Jordi Alba as the starter. Spain boss, Luis Enrique is not shy of chopping and changing players based on merit. With the World Cup coming up next year, I’m sure their left-back options will be looking to be an important piece to the puzzle. Who becomes that piece is still up for grabs.
Everyone needs a bit of competition, right?
A Marcos Alonso transfer will be great for Barcelona, however, it may cause a few complications in the Chelsea camp.
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There are four Chelsea defenders who will be out of contract come summer 2022. Thiago Silva, Cesar Azpilicueta, Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen, all centre-back options who are still undergoing contract negotiations.
It will be Chelsea’s priority to sort out any necessary transfers and ensure that we are not short of options for the next season. Letting go of Alonso will just add to their list of transfers needed in the summer.
Alonso’s contract will be up in 2023, so we need to decide. Should the Blues entertain Barcelona’s interest now, or risk it all until it’s potentially too late?
What do you think about Alonso’s links to Barcelona? Follow our CareFreeChelsea writer Anita Abayomi on Twitter to get involved in the discussion and give us your thoughts in the comments section.