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Barcelona face goalkeeper conundrum with Neto on his way out of the club

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Photo via Imago

It has been jam-packed few days at the Camp Nou offices. Three signings, the return of Jordi Cryuff, and Ronald Koeman’s continuity, all were made official this week. Amidst all this, as per a report by Sport, the Barça board is currently facing trouble deciding who will be the second choice goalkeeper, behind Marc-Andre ter Stegen, next season.

Ter Stegen had an operation on his knee recently. However, the club believes that he will be the first choice once he returns from the injury. It’s rumoured that Neto will be leaving this window due to a lack of game time. The Brazilian had also asked to leave in the winter window, and his intentions have not changed. The only way that he will stay would be the unavailability of any offers in the window.

In the event of Neto’s departure, the board have two options to replace the 31-year-old. Either they can trust the 22-year-old Goalkeeper from Barça B, Inaki Pena, or go for an option similar to Eric Garcia and Sergio Aguero, a player whose contract expires on 30th June. One name that has been linked to Barcelona strongly is Gianluigi Donnarumma, who is now a free agent.

The current free agents available in the market, other than Donnarumma, is Rui Silva, Marko Dmitrovic, Andrey Lunev, and Tomas Vaclik. It’s important to note that if any of the mentioned names are selected for the role, they will have to adapt to the Barça style of play. Amidst all these uncertainties, it’s almost certain that anybody chosen for the role will not receive much game time if the dynamics are not changed. Despite that, the current administration is divided.

Since Claudi Bravo left in 2016, even after spectacular performances from Jasper Cillisen, the Dutchman did not exceed 1000 minutes in a single season playing 900, 990, and 990 across three seasons. Over the last two seasons, Neto played a total of 1560 minutes, that too because ter Stegen missed the starting of the season due to a knee injury.

I have been an avid watcher of football for almost a decade now. My first love was Messi and not Barcelona, however, over the years the Blaugrana colours are something I identify myself with. Through writing, I want to give back to the sport that has given me so much joy over the years.