While enthusiasts of the beautiful game frequently focus on the tangible contributions evident on the pitch, Barcelona veteran Sergi Roberto’s intangible impact as a captain has garnered recent acclaim.
According to Javi Miguel via AS, Sergi Roberto is the outfield player with the fewest minutes in the squad (224), but his role in the dressing room as a mentor to the young players and the newcomers has proven to be key.
Influence that transcends the field
The Spaniard’s role as a squad player has seen him spend most of the season on the bench, with players far younger than him finding more time on the pitch.
However, the report argues that Roberto’s limited playing time has been overshadowed by guidance behind closed doors.
The 31-year-old recognises his role in the team and does not raise any objections, understanding he must play a supporting role in the final stages of his career, just as Xavi once did in the 2014/15 season.
Captain leading by example
Having been named the first captain ahead of the campaign, restricted game-time has not stopped him from mentoring the youngsters in the dressing room.
Roberto has adapted to his new circumstances admirably, working closely with the coach and helping with locker room administration, something that has pleased Xavi.
Barcelona require leaders who can help new arrivals settle in as well as the youngsters to be phased in properly, which is what Roberto aims to excel at.
Even so, as an experienced veteran of the team and a La Masia graduate, he will continue to be an option in times of need, with the player chiming in during an injury crisis last season as well.
Expected to be his last season at the club, Barça and Roberto aspire to conclude the campaign on a good note.