Ronald Araujo hoping to stake a claim as Barcelona’s main centre-back in Gerard Pique’s absence

Barcelona went into Wednesday evening’s clash with league leaders Real Sociedad in need of victory.

The Catalans were nine points behind La Real before kick off and should they lose the gap would have been extended to 12.

They didn’t. The Blaugrana went a goal down to the Basques but rallied to secure a 2-1 victory, with Jordi Alba opening the scoring with his weaker foot before Frenkie de Jong scored their second.

Barcelona controlled the first half comfortably against what was quite a jaded La Real team. The second half was more tense but they managed to hold out for an important win.

A surprise pre-match was Clement Lenglet‘s demotion to the bench and coach Ronald Koeman‘s decision to field the youthful pair of Ronald Araujo and Oscar Mingueza at centre-back.

Koeman has proven to trust Araujo as an able starter in the absence of the injured Gerard Pique. The Uruguayan is very strong defensively and capable in handling rival forwards as explained by Mundo Deportivo.

He was superb against La Real. Dominant aerially, quick to cut out nascent attacks and strong in the challenge, he has all the attributes to be a top central defender.

Araujo completed the 90 minutes, making 24 passes, touching the ball 42 times, making one successful block, one successful challenge, six recoveries and eight turnovers.

He’ll be hoping to stake his claim in these next few months as Barcelona’s premier centre-half for the next few years after his period injured. Still just 21, he has a bright future ahead of him.

Featured image courtesy of FC Barcelona.

Tags Barcelona La Liga Real Sociedad Ronald Araujo