It was something of a surprise when Barcelona were linked with Atletico Madrid winger Yannick Carrasco, but it appears the two were in talks over the winger.
Memphis Depay went the other way, and as a result, the Blaugrana secured a €20m option to buy Carrasco in the summer, as was confirmed by the Barcelona Sporting Director Mateu Alemany.
“The Carrasco thing is another element in a negotiation with Atletico, a good player, who in the future is interesting to us,” said the Mallorca native.
Carrasco is having a mixed season with Atletico Madrid. Having lost his place in the starting XI, he has enjoyed a number of excellent moments, but those bright spots have only been part of an overall disappointing picture.
Looking ahead to the summer, Todofichajes say that if Carrasco does head to Catalonia, then it will provoke the departure of another Barcelona forward.
From the Atletico persepective, the deal works well. They get an income for a player aging into their thirties, with just over a year left on his deal. They can then reinvest that money in further reinforcements, and ones that are more to the manager’s taste both positionally and personality-wise at this point.
For Barcelona, it certainly gives them a predicament. Currently it seems as if he would not get into the starting XI, but the Blaugrana already have three forwards who are not able to do so either.
Carrasco operates best on the left, coming in on his right, and could be a good addition as an alternative. Barcelona currently don’t have a forward who is most comfortable on that side.
It could signal trouble for Ansu Fati though. Although he can play through the middle, the 20-year-old wonderkid would currently likely lose what little minutes he has to Carrasco. His only comfortable position in a 4-3-3 is from the left, but he has not been playing, as Barcelona look to flood the midfield with four traditional midfielders alternating positions.
Raphinha or Ferran Torres be more easily sold by the Blaugrana, and it is also true that there are already three players looking to play on the right with Ousmane Dembele. The latter appears to have his position locked down as long as he was fit.
The Brazilian may have performed best of the three, but as the older player with the most market, he might be concerned for his future along with Ansu Fati. He is also the player who is most likely to demand first-team football.
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