Arthur Melo returned to Barcelona as a gesture of goodwill, but the club did not pardon the 23-year-old. The Brazilian was transferred to Juventus in an operation that brought Miralem Pjanic to the Camp Nou. Arthur returned to Barcelona last Friday after speaking with club sporting director Eric Abidal.
On Monday, the club informed that “the player cannot be part of any activity with the first team until his disciplinary file is resolved”. Unlike his team-mates, Arthur had not returned from the mini-vacation after the end of La Liga, which forced Barça to open a file against the player. Tomorrow, there will be a meeting between the club and Arthur’s representatives to resolve the situation.
Arthur is not likely to join Barcelona in their trip to Lisbon before the Champions League quarterfinals against Bayern Münich. With the exclusion of Arthur, Quique Setién will have to rely on Busquets, Vidal, De Jong, Rakitic, Roberto, and Riqui Puig in the midfield.
Arthur appeared at the Ciutat Esportiva last Friday after passing a PCR test in a private clinic. He met with Abidal, and tried to support his teammates at the Camp Nou against Napoli, but he could not enter the situation. The midfielder was not on UEFA’s player list because he missed the PCR tests.
Arthur is feeling like he is being put in a situation on which the club is justifying his transfer to Juventus. However, since his transfer was made official, Arthur has only featured 5 minutes for Barcelona.
Video: Barcelona vs Alavés — Match Preview
Barcelona take on Alavés in Matchday 6 of La Liga Santander, following a wonderful display and victory over Juventus midweek, in the Champions League. But Ronald Koeman’s side have already dropped big points in the league this season, and know that anything other than 3 points against the Basque outfit would be disastrous for our title aspirations.
This should be another good opportunity for Barça to showcase their abilities once more and build on that performance against Juventus, as Alavés are a considerably weaker side to the sort of opposition that the Catalans have had to face so far this campaign.
Having said that, Pablo Machín’s men will try and make life difficult for Barça, similar to what Getafe did, and Alavés will feel confident that with the right sort of game-plan, they can make Koeman’s side slip up in La Liga once more.